Saudi Crown Prince heads to Russian Federation for World Cup

2026 World Cup is awarded to North America

The United States, Mexico and Canada will host soccer's biggest event in 2026.

Safe, rational and bountifully lucrative as the Federation Internationale de Football Association decision is to have the 2026 World Cup hosted by the US, Canada and Mexico, it is also disappointing for romantics fancying another tournament in Africa - and laced with contradictions, too.

The joint bid had been the front-runner for the 48-team tournament from the moment a North American coalition was first mooted two years ago, and there have been spells when it has looked like the only credible candidate. It beat competition from Morocco by securing 134 votes (including 11 from Africa) compared to 65 for the North African nation.

It marks the fifth time the North African country has failed to secure the right to host the global football tournament.

"The lovely game transcends borders and cultures".

On June 14 at 6:00 p.m. Moscow time (11:00 a.m. ET), teams from Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia will kick off the 2018 World Cup at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow. Football today is the only victor.

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Putin was the surprise guest of honour at FIFA's annual gathering on the eve of the World Cup, and was welcomed on stage by Gianni Infantino, the governing body's president.

It marks the first time the World Cup will be held in more than one country since 2002, when South Korea and Japan shared hosting duties.

President Donald Trump welcomed the news, tweeting: "The U.S., together with Mexico and Canada, just got the World Cup".

England, like Morocco, knows the feeling of falling short in the bid to host the World Cup. The United States hosted the tournament in 1994 while Mexico has hosted in 1970 and 1986.

"Both bids were of a very high quality and we welcome the fact that the bidding process was both open and transparent".

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