2026 World Cup In USA, Mexico And Canada Is A Cure For The Qatar Winter Blues | World Cup | Football

While there are many doubts and reservations about the choice of venue for this year’s FIFA Men’s World Cup in Qatar for all sorts of reasons, the same certainly cannot be said for the highly anticipated 2026 tournament that will take place in the United States, Mexico and Canada.

The host cities for the first stage with an expanded draw of 48 teams and also the first across three countries were finally announced this week after arguably the most competitive bidding process ever seen in the competition final, with 16 stadiums finally selected in the three countries.

And while the extravaganza promises to be the mother of all World Cup parties and a magnet for fans around the world in stark contrast to Qatar, alongside winners and relieved cities, there is also had controversy and deep disappointment from some of those who missed out. .

The accepted wisdom was that the split would be 10/3/3, with the United States getting the huge lion’s share of games, and Canada and Mexico getting three sites each. But Edmonton north of the border was overlooked, and along with Kansas City and Boston, that brought the US total to 11, with three south of the border and only Toronto and Vancouver representing Canada.

The complete list of officially selected cities in the United States is: New York/New Jersey (MetLife Stadium); Los Angeles (SoFi Stadium); Dallas (AT&T Stadium); San Francisco Bay Area (Levi’s Stadium); Miami (Hard Rock Stadium); Atlanta (Mercedes-Benz Stadium); Seattle (Lumen Field); Houston (NRG Stadium); Philadelphia (Lincoln Financial Field); Kansas City, Missouri (Arrowhead Stadium); and Boston (Gillette Stadium).

And in Mexico and Canada, they are: Guadalajara (Akron Stadium), Monterrey (BBVA Bancomer Stadium), Mexico City (Aztec Stadium), Toronto (BMO Field) and Vancouver (BC Place).

Mexico City’s Azteca Stadium becomes the first venue to stage three World Cups after hosting in 1970 and 1986, and with the arrival of a whole new series of advanced stadiums, not a single one of the venues used during the FIFA World Cup world of 1994 in the United States will be used this time.

The venue for the 1994 World Cup Final, the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, was not chosen, with another Los Angeles-area venue, SoFi Stadium, being chosen instead.

The US venues that were not selected are Baltimore/Washington (M&T Bank Stadium); Orlando, Florida (Camping World Stadium); Cincinnati (Paul Brown Stadium); Nashville, Tennessee (Nissan Stadium); Denver (Empower Field at Mile High); and Edmonton (Commonwealth Stadium).

Florida will no doubt be a very popular destination for fans and players alike, but with Miami included, Orlando would still struggle to be included as well. The omission of the candidacy of Baltimore and the capital Washington DC will be a real blow to the center of government.

These cities merged their efforts, with Baltimore set to host games, and Washington all set to provide much of the entertainment and accompanying fan-fest and activities, but those plans were sidestepped by organizers.

Cincinnati and Nashville were never among the favorites, while Denver wondered if transportation infrastructure issues serving Empower Field and the elevation cost them.

But for Edmonton in Canada, whose Commonwealth Stadium had hosted 2022 World Cup qualifiers as an impressive young national team traveled to the Qatar tournament in style, the announcement was devastated.

Indeed, they had competed against both Toronto and Vancouver – but also around six American cities for the last place.

“Obviously we’re disappointed,” said Edmonton Mayor Amarjeet Sohi. “But it’s part of the process and we made a very compelling offer to FIFA.”

About 100 of those most closely involved in the bid had gathered in the Commonwealth Stadium Alumni Hall to watch the televised debates live from New York – and all were preparing for a celebration, but instead there was tears.

What is certain is that for fans not just in the UK but around the world who may be keeping their hands in their pockets for Qatar and choosing to watch it on TV, now may be the time. come to start saving for the next one.

No worries about the number of construction workers who would have been killed during the construction of the stadiums, or the disruption of the major leagues with the tournament starting in June, or the multitude of human rights concerns, including the homophobia, or, less importantly, the public consumption of alcohol.

Instead, a wonderful choice of cities and cultures to experience in a traditional soccer hotbed of a Mexico, Canada with its rapidly improving side, and the United States with its 11 cities, a nation that really woke up to the beautiful game following the 1994 staging.

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