US, Mexico and Canada to host 2026 World Cup

US, Mexico and Canada to host 2026 World Cup as Morocco lose out

The soccer showpiece will return to the US for the first time since 1994 after gaining 134 votes, while Morocco got 65 at the FIFA Congress in Moscow on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the U.S. hosted the World Cup previously in 1994 while Mexico hosted it in 1970 and 1986.

The "United Bid" had been favourites from the start but Morocco's promise of a "European World Cup in Africa" was appealing to the committee. Both Valerie Plante of Montreal and John Tory of Toronto retweeted a video of the bid team reacting to the news, with Tory adding, "We won!" The United States staged the tournament in 1994.

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Wednesday's vote offers hope that this could lead to an entirely new generation of Canadian youngsters taking up soccer, which could have long-term benefits for the men's team.

Herdman said there is precedent for the nations involved in joint bids being granted entry, pointing to Japan and South Korea in 2002. That remains the only World Cup the Canadian men have ever qualified for.

The 2018 World Cup opening match and final will be played in Moscow at the Luzhniki stadium.

Herdman pointed to the performance of national team member Alphonso Davies, 17, who spoke to delegates ahead of their vote Wednesday, as representative of the quality of the young talent on his team.

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The 2026 event will be the first expanded tournament featuring 48 teams, up from the current 32-team tournament, which begins in Russian Federation on Thursday.

As it stands now, 60 games will be played in the United States, with Mexico and Canada hosting 10 each.

One of the most immediate and significant implications of Wednesday's result is that Canada's mens national team will play at a World Cup for the first time in nearly four decades, as all three host nations likely qualify automatically for the tournament.

"This is a monumental victory for the Concacaf family, as the United Bid exemplified the strong collaboration, beyond politics and business, that now exists in our region".

The American candidate cities are Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York/New Jersey, Orlando, Philadelphia, San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle and Washington, D.C.

Miami and Orlando are among the 23 cities in the running to host matches, and Hard Rock Stadium - built for soccer and known as a host to sold-out global matches - is expected to be selected.

For years, North America has looked at avenues to grow its game, and while some may argue that a 48-team competition will dilute the World Cup field, for CONCACAF and the rest of the World Cup it opens up a brand-new opportunity for teams that have previously been left at the alter.

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