Saturday, 18 August, 2018

Selection of North American bid could bring tournament to Edmonton

The United bid by Canada Mexico and the United States was awarded the 2026 FIFA World Cup The United bid by Canada Mexico and the United States was awarded the 2026 FIFA World Cup
Cassandra Castillo | 14 June, 2018, 11:27

Herdman, who coached the women's national squad when Canada hosted the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2015, says "we were singing O Canada with 60,000 people, alongside everyone that was watching".

The head of USA soccer thanked Saudi Arabia on Wednesday for supporting North America's winning bid to host the World Cup in 2026.

Edmonton, Toronto and Montreal are the three Canadian cities designated to possibly host games in the 2026 tournament, which is expanding to include 48 countries, up from the current 32-team format.

While Mexico has hosted the attractive game's largest tournament in 1970 and 1986, and the US hosted it in 1994, this is the first time any World Cup games will be played in Canada. Federation Internationale de Football Association will meet with the bid committee over the next two years to determine, by mid or late 2020, the North American cities that will stage the tournament's 80 matches.

All matches from the Quarterfinal on, including the World Cup Final, will be played in the United States.

The North America bid received 134 of the 203 votes, while Morocco polled 65 in the vote of the FIFA Congress in Moscow which saw one member vote for "neither bid".

The loss is Morocco's fifth in a World Cup bidding process after previous tries in 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010.

More news: Rising fuel prices spur inflation in May

"You look at the assets we've got in England, or the United Kingdom, in terms of grounds: some of the best grounds in world football, the best training grounds".

The games will be played in 16 cities.

Of the 23 cities chosen as potential host sites, 15 now have MLS teams.

At the time, the City of Vancouver said it was "extremely disappointed" it was no longer being considered for the tournament, adding that "hosting the biggest sporting event on earth would have offered significant economic benefits". Kansas City is among 23 cities listed in the bid as candidate cities to host some of the 80 matches that will be played in the three countries over the course of the event.

Portland was not chosen as one of the finalists to host World Cup matches. This effort was an enormous priority for former U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati and his successor Carlos Cordeiro and the victorious effort could be an enormous boost to the sport in the United States.

Others saw the event as an opportunity to heal North America's frayed relations since U.S. President Donald Trump came to office 18 months ago promising to build a wall on the southern border with Mexico to stem illegal immigration and to tear up the North American Free Trade Agreement, known as NAFTA.

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