U.S., Mexico, Canada announce joint bid for 2026 FIFA World Cup

The USA, Canada and Mexico have announced they will launch a historic joint bid to host the 2026 World Cup.

The US, Canada and Mexico bid is said to be a favorite for the 2026 World Cup as the two previous World Cup hosts, Europe and Asia, can not bid for the next event.

The announcement was made on the floor of the One World Trade Center in NY on Monday.

US Soccer Federation chief Sunil Gulati, who announced the bid in NY with his Canadian and Mexican counterparts, insisted they had the full backing of President Donald Trump, despite the US leader's rocky relations with Mexico.

Announcing the bid, U.S. chief Gulati said three quarters of the tournament's matches would be staged in the United States, with Canada and Mexico hosting 10 games each.

Asked how the joint bid is viewed by President Trump, who has promised to build a border wall between the USA and Mexico, Gulati said at the news conference that Trump was "fully supportive". It is still unclear as to whether all three nations would qualify automatically for the tournament as the Federation Internationale de Football Association council would have to discuss that factor and so to would CONCACAF as qualifying would be heavily impacted in the region. No other World Cup has averaged over 53,000 fans per match. The U.S. lost the chance to host the 2022 World Cup, but that bidding process was rife with bribery and corruption. The U.S has been to 10, including one as host (1994). The U.S. has submitted failed bids for hosting in 2018 or 2022 with an expected financial cost of $9 million.

Africa, whose only World Cup was in South Africa in 2010, however, would be able to bid and Morocco is the most likely candidate.

More details will be released by the three governing bodies in due course as they will discuss their bid at the Federation Internationale de Football Association congress in May in Bahrain.

The news of the joint World Cup bid was met with some resistance in Mexico, nearly entirely because the country - host of the 1970 and 1986 World Cups - was expected to be handed more games.

Hosting the FIFA World Cup in Canada could be huge for the development of the of soccer in the nation.

"We think this is a positive signal and symbol we should do together in unifying people, especially in all three countries".

The three nations have hosted 13 FIFA World Cups combined (Men's, Women's and Youth), which is more than any other trio of geographically connected nations, and set attendance records for five of those events.

"We have full support of the United States government in this project".

Both the United States of America (1994) and Mexico (1970 and 1986) have hosted the World Cup before.

Gulati also played down the possibility that the politics of US President Donald Trump could hamper the bid.

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