There was a powerful response after FIFA introduced the 2026 World Cup ultimate might be held at MetLife Stadium in New York/New Jersey.
The New York bid held off a powerful problem from Dallas to safe the July 19 recreation, the fruits of the expanded 48-team match being co-hosted by the USA, Canada and Mexico.
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The competitors will kick-off with the opening recreation at Mexico Metropolis’s iconic Azteca Stadium on June 11.
“Probably the most inclusive and impactful FIFA World Cup ever is now not a dream however a actuality that can take form within the type of 104 matches in 16 state-of-the-art stadiums throughout Canada, Mexico and the USA,” mentioned FIFA president Gianni Infantino.
“From the opening match on the iconic Estadio Azteca to the spectacular ultimate in New York New Jersey, gamers and followers have been on the core of our intensive planning for this game-changing match … that won’t solely set new information but in addition go away an indelible legacy.” Atlanta and Dallas will host the semi-finals whereas the third-place recreation might be performed in Miami.
The quarter-final video games will happen in Los Angeles, Kansas Metropolis, Miami and Boston.
A complete of 16 cities throughout the three international locations will host video games with the majority of the matches being held within the USA.
Soccer followers mocked the selection of New Jersey, historically seen because the ugly duckling sibling of glamorous New York.
Fox TV soccer analyst Stu Holden tweeted: “Anticipated the 2026 Remaining to be in Dallas, due to the roof, measurement of stadium, and many others – however in the end assume New York/New Jersey and MetLife obtained the nod due to the benefits New York presents as a metropolis, media market, jap time zone, and alternatives for large fan occasions.”
The 1994 World Cup was additionally held in the USA and the ultimate came about on the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, close to Los Angeles.
New York hosted video games at that match on the outdated Giants Stadium, which was later demolished to make means for MetLife, which opened in 2010.
The selections had been introduced on a reside tv broadcast in North America that featured Infantino alongside comic and actor Kevin Hart, rapper Drake and superstar Kim Kardashian.
The 82,500-seat MetLife Stadium, throughout the Hudson River from New York in East Rutherford, New Jersey, is the house of the NFL’s New York Giants and New York Jets however has held plenty of worldwide soccer video games, together with the ultimate of the 2016 Copa America match.
The New York bid had lobbied arduous on the town’s expertise at internet hosting main worldwide occasions and it’s place as a world metropolis with straightforward transportation connections for followers.
Dallas had hoped that AT&T Stadium, in Arlington, Texas, dwelling to the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys, would profit from having a roof to guard the sport from the weather.
There’s some compensation for Dallas with the venue being given 9 whole video games — probably the most of any venue.
Los Angeles had additionally thrown a hat into the ring however the try struggled amid disagreements with FIFA about match upgrades wanted to NFL venue SoFi Stadium.
Historical past for Mexico
Mexico Metropolis’s Azteca will develop into the primary stadium to host World Cup match video games in three separate editions after 1970 and 1986.
The venue hosted the finals of the 1970 and 1986 tournaments. The World Cup will happen throughout celebrations of the 250th anniversary of American independence.
A round-of-16 recreation might be held on July 4, Independence Day, in Philadelphia, the place the US Declaration of Independence was signed.
The US will kick-off group stage competitors at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles on June 12 and also will play in Seattle.
Toronto was chosen to host the primary recreation for the Canadian staff. Vancouver is the opposite Canadian venue which can host the squad.
The growth of the match to 48 groups from 32 means there might be an extra 24 matches, making up a complete of 104 video games throughout the 16 venues.
The match will take the format of 12 teams of 4 groups with the highest two going by means of together with the eight finest third-placed groups.
From there, the competitors is a straight knockout format with the finalists having to play eight video games fairly than the earlier seven.
FIFA says the match schedule, which is not going to be full till the qualification course of has ended, has been designed to restrict journey for the groups.
The total draw for the match is anticipated to be held in late 2025. Group fixtures have been designed to keep away from cross-coast journey for the groups, who will even be capable to select from staff bases of their group’s area.
The 16 host cities for the match are: Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Guadalajara, Houston, Kansas Metropolis, Los Angeles, Mexico Metropolis, Miami, Monterrey, New York-New Jersey, Philadelphia, San Francisco Bay Space, Seattle, Toronto and Vancouver.