USA, Mexico & Canada Announce Joint Bid for 2026 World Cup

The United States hosted the World Cup for the only time in 1994 when Brazil triumphed

By the time U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati sat before the media on Monday in New York City to discuss the worst-kept secret in soccer - that the United States would bid for the 2026 World Cup with co-hosts Canada and Mexico - the official announcement had lost considerable steam.

Plus, the recent travel bans that US president Donald Trump has tried to enact could also work against the CONCACAF joint bid - how will fans, players and officials travel freely between all three countries if they're potentially not allowed to enter the United States?

Instead of decrying this as a bunch of "globalists" invading America with the sport of soccer, Trump is reportedly "pleased" that these three countries have formed an alliance that could bring the world's biggest soccer tournament back to North America for the first time since the US hosted it in 1994. This will be three years later than scheduled because of corruption allegations surrounding the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russian Federation and Qatar.

Sunil Gulati, left, President of the United States Soccer Federation, Decio de Maria, center, President of the Mexican Football Federation, and Victor Montagliani, President of the Canadian Soccer Association, hold a news conference, Monday, April 10, 2017, in NY.

He probably also loves that, under this proposal, it is likely that the United States would host 60 of the 80 World Cup games, including all of the games from the quarterfinals on, while Mexico and Canada will host only 10 each.

The proposal would be for the United States of America to host 60 matches, with 10 games each in Canada and Mexico.

North America last held a men's World Cup in 1994, when it was hosted by the US.

Gulati believes the infrastructure in North America, including multiple newly constructed National Football League stadiums, is key to the bid being selected.

Gulati was understandably not keen to get into a discussion on politics, but he revealed the bid had the full support of President Donald Trump, who was said to be particularly happy about Mexico's involvement. But the bid, even now, nine years from the tournament, is considered a favorite since a hosts from South America, Europe, which have hosted recently, and Asia, which will host in 2022.

The U.S., Mexico and Canada are expected to put forth a very strong bid. It will take another month or so before Federation Internationale de Football Association even issues its technical specifications for the bid.

Infantino has warned that nations considering bidding for the World Cup must allow any team who qualifies, and their supporters, access to the country. The expansion will begin after the World Cups in Russian Federation and Qatar.

But, as Sunil Gulati said, it feels the bid is stronger with three countries on board, and it has the ability to bring the nations closer together, at a time when political relationships between the USA and Mexico are not strong. The site of the opening match is under discussion, Gulati said. And, if successful, it would be just the second World Cup held in multiple countries (2002 in Korea and Japan was the first).



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