Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Sport | By Ellis Neal

US, Mexico, Canada in joint bid for 2026 World Cup

US, Mexico, Canada in joint bid for 2026 World Cup

Announcing the bid, USA chief Gulati said three quarters of the tournament's matches would be staged in the United States, with Canada and Mexico hosting 10 games each.

The CONCACAF countries confirmed their plan to bring the tournament to North America at a press conference at One World Trade Centre in NY.

The North American effort will mark the first time that three countries have bid to host the World Cup, and that year's tournament will be the first in which 48 teams compete in the new expanded format.

Morocco is the most likely candidate but would need an African co-hoster because of the sheer scope of an 80-game tournament (up from 64) and couldn't get near the facilities and financial might of North America and Mexico.

Mexico has been to 15 prior World Cup finals, including two as host (1970 and 1986).

"We have very specifically addressed this with the president", Gulati said. He is especially pleased that Mexico was a part of this bid. "Starting today, the U.S. gets back control of its borders", Trump said.

"We are not at all concerned at some of the concerns that some people may raise", Gulati said.

If also successful, it would be the first World Cup in the United States since 1994, where Brazil defeated Italy on penalties at the Rose Bowl and broke the World Cup average attendance record with almost 69,000 spectators per game, a mark that still stands today.

The 2026 tournament host will be selected by Federation Internationale de Football Association in 2020. Canada is the only one of the three that has never hosted a World Cup. The three nation bid will allow the three countries to host games for the 2026 edition of the World Cup. The proposal requests that the region be given the chance soon to prepare a report that shows the specifics of the bid to meet FIFA's requirement with the hope of the bid being awarded then, possibly by the end of the year.

Canada is now ranked No. 109 in the world, compared to No. 16 for Mexico and No. 23 for the U.S. The Canadian men are rated 15th among CONCACAF, which covers North and Central America and the Caribbean.

Federation Internationale de Football Association rules now rule out bidders from Europe and Asia because Russia is staging the World Cup in 2018 and Qatar hosts the sporting spectacular in 2022.

The 2018 and 2022 World Cups will be played in Russian Federation and Qatar, respectively. For the 2014 World Cup, Brazil had a total of 12 stadiums used as sites for games.

The three federation announced their intention to submit a bid Monday in NY.

"We have the luxury of having stadiums that already exist", Gulati stated. Gulati said that all games from the quarterfinals to the final would be played in the U.S. However, the European Championship has been hosted by multiple countries at the same time on a handful of occasions.

All World Cup bids must be submitted by December 2018.

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