Things to know: Unified 2026 Fifa World Cup Bid for Football

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Cups (three Men’s and three Women’s) as well as six youth World Cups and the 2026 Fifa World Cup.

Combined, the USA, Canada, and Mexico have successfully hosted 13 FIFA events, which is the most of any trio of geographically connected nations in the world. That figure includes six different FIFA World

A History of Hosting World-Class Events

2026 FIFA World Cup

Along with holding current attendance records for the 2026 Fifa World Cup and U-17 World Cup, Mexico also set then record figures when it hosted both the 1970 and 1986 FIFA World Cups. The 1994 FIFA World Cup in the United States surpassed those marks and holds still-standing records in both average (68,991) and overall attendance (3,587,538). The overall attendance record is made more impressive considering the 24-team tournament included only 52 matches, compared to the 32 sides and 64 games that have made up the five editions since.

Additionally, the memorable 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup still holds the record for highest average attendance for that tournament with 37,319 per match. At 1,194,215, the 16-team tournament also held the overall attendance record until 2015, when the expanded 24-team FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada took the figure to 1,353,506 total spectators – a record for any FIFA tournament outside the men’s World Cup.

Most Recent Success

2026 FIFA World Cup

The 2016 Copa America Centenario most recently proved the USA’s hosting chops. Taking place in 10 venues across the country last summer, the tournament witnessed an overall attendance of nearly 1.5 million fans, with the 32 matches welcoming an average of 46,00 spectators per game, setting 2026 Fifa World Cup records in both categories.

Why a Unified Bid?

2026 FIFA World Cup

As seen above, the North American trio of nations has been well-tested and delivered when it comes to hosting big-time FIFA events. A unified bid between the USA, Canada, and Mexico reflects the growth of the game in the CONCACAF region as well as the newly expanded 48-team tournament field, which will make its debut at the2026 Fifa World Cup.

“This is a milestone day for U.S. Soccer and for CONCACAF,” U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati said. “We gave careful consideration to the prospect of bidding for the 2026 FIFA World Cup, and ultimately feel strongly this is the right thing for our region and for our sport. Along with our partners from the Canada Soccer Association and the Federación Mexicana de Fútbol, we are confident that we will submit an exemplary bid worthy of bringing the FIFA World Cup back to North America. The United States, Mexico, and Canada have individually demonstrated their exceptional abilities to host world-class events. When our nations come together as one, as we will for 2026, there is no question the United States, Mexico, and Canada will deliver an experience that will celebrate the game and serve players, supporters and partners alike.”

Format Details

2026 FIFA World Cup

While Gulati stressed the main goal for the three governing bodies was to first work towards earning the 2026 Fifa World Cup, he did lay out some of the basic details for the potential tournament in North America.

The 48-team competition will comprise a total of 80 games, with 60 to be held in the United States and an additional 10 each in Canada and Mexico. The proposed format would also see the USA host all games from the Quarterfinals to the 2026 Fifa World Cup Final.

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