US, Mexico, Canada launch bid for soccer's 2026 World Cup

It's so hard to tell what FIFA's thinking or what they're doing or what's the process after the last bidding fiasco.

The European Championship, second to the World Cup in popularity, has had multiple hosts three times, albeit in small, neighboring countries: Belgium-Netherlands in 2000, Austria-Switzerland in '08 and Ukraine-Poland in 2012.

"This is a milestone day for U.S. Soccer and for CONCACAF", Gulati said.

That is so important. They did acknowledge, however, that they would have to consult with Federation Internationale de Football Association on that issue as the World Cup has never been shared between three nations before. All games from the quarterfinals will also be played in the United States.

"Mexico has been recognised for being a magnificent host of past FIFA events, such as the 1970 and 1986 World Cups, the 1999 Confederations Cup, the 2011 Under-17 World Cup, and most recently the 2016 FIFA Congress".

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Gulati noted how hosting the 1994 World Cup helped kick-start soccer in the U.S.

The biggest games would all belong to the United States.

"Another World Cup here would further that and it would do the same in Canada".

Gulati confirmed the general parameters of the bid is a World Cup of 80 games, 60 of which would be played in the USA and 10 each in Canada and Mexico.

Some in Canada were extremely disappointed with this allocation.

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The World Cup was last held in the region at U.S. 94, while Mexico hosted in 1970 and 1986. They have magnificent facilities that can host games, training facilities, teams and supporters. In that time, every other continent will have hosted the World Cup, including Europe three times and Asia twice. Modern stadiums across the United States and perhaps in Mexico and Canada, too. U.S. likely needed both Canada and Mexico to secure this tournament. Here in Canada we will take a small piece of the pie, and it will be something this country has never sampled before - and it will be fantastic.

Among the possible venues are MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey (82,500 capacity, opened in 2010); AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas (80,000, 2009); Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California (68,500, 2014); Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts (66,000, 2002); and Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia (69,500 in 2003). That would be a major surprise.

The 2026 tournament will be the first to use an expanded format.

The 2026 tournament will be the first under the expanded format approved by Federation Internationale de Football Association past year, with 48 nations taking part compared to the current 32. In Canada, Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver come to mind. The Guardian first reported last week that the bid was expected to materialize. A pre-tournament qualifying event could also see games in Canada, which would likely also host friendlies in the leadup to the main competition. All of the games from the quarter-finals onwards would be held in the US. The group stage will have 16 groups of three, with two teams from each group advancing to the next round. The final that year was played in Pasadena's Rose Bowl.

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