(Twitter/WorldCupHQ)

US would host majority of games at 2026 World Cup

A decision on the winning bid will be made June 13 at the FIFA Congress in Mexico

The group hoping to bring the 2026 World Cup to North America has defended its decision for a 60-10-10 split in games.

The plan calls for the U.S. to stage 60 games, including all games from the quarter-finals. Canada and Mexico will each stage 10 matches.

Carlos Cordeiro, president of the U.S. Soccer Federation, called it “the most optimal mix of cities and matches.” And he said the bid is not anticipating that the world governing body of soccer will make any changes to its proposal, assuming it wins.

“The split of matches that we have proposed to FIFA frankly reflect the resources of the three countries,” Cordeiro told a media conference call Monday. “We in the United States are blessed with some very substantial resources in terms of stadium infrastructure, cities and so on. And that reflects the 60 matches we have on the table.

“But at the end of the day there is a reason why FIFA has encouraged joint bids and we do think that our joint bids taken together provide for a vastly superior bid than our competition.”

The so-called unified bid is up against Morocco to stage the men’s soccer showcase. A decision on the winning bid will be made June 13 at the FIFA Congress in Mexico.

The North American group presented its bid book to FIFA on Friday in Zurich.

Steven Reed, president of the Canada Soccer Association, downplayed the decision by Vancouver to withdraw as a candidate host city because it could not agree to FIFA’s demands.

“I think we’re still really excited about that the candidate host cities that we have,” said Reed, referencing Edmonton, Montreal and Toronto.

“I guess to be perfectly honest I would be disappointed in that it’s my back yard and I’ve lived there for most of my life,” added Reed, a native of North Vancouver, when asked again about Vancouver missing out.

Chicago and Minneapolis also pulled out at the last minute.

The 2026 World Cup will feature a newly expanded format with 48 teams and 80 games, up from 32 and 60 respectively.

Cordeiro also cited the “opportunity for record revenues” with all games sold out and some 5.8 million tickets sold, making for ticketing revenue of more than US$2.1 billion.

The North American bid features 23 candidate host cities — including the three in Canada and three in Mexico. That list will be likely be reduced to no more than 16 by FIFA should the North American bid prevail.

Mexican Football Federation president Decio De Maria said it will be easy for those living in the north of Mexico to attend games in the southern U.S.

“I think it is the same for Canadians,” he said. “They can attend easily the games that are going to be in the north of the U.S.”

De Maria called that mobility “a rich powerful tool of our bid.”

The three executives were in Kuala Lumpur where they were presenting their bid to Asian soccer officials. They have already visited officials in South America, Africa and Europe.

“We’re not taking any vote for granted,” said Cordeiro.

The U.S. soccer boss said he was not concerned that the North American bid might be affected by anti-Trump sentiments around the globe.

“We believe strongly that this decision will be made on its merits,” he said.

“Look, this is not geopolitics,” he added, when pressed on the matter. “We’re talking about football and fundamentally, at the end of the day, what’s in the best interest of football and our footballing community. And we’ve had no backlash.”

Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Fire forces 36 people at Vanderhoof care home to evacuate

No one was hurt after the fire at Stuart Nechako Manor

Repen: FOI data proves Telkwans being ripped off by ICBC

Former Telkwa mayor received a response from ICBC and says the results don’t look good for residents

Fires still burning near Telegraph Creek

BC Wildfire Service assures residents of a proactive plan heading into wildfire season

Northwest entrepreneurs pitch their plans for cash prizes

ThriveNorth announces 12 finalists in this year’s business challenge

Gas prices spike in northern B.C. ahead of the long weekend

Fuel went up 17 cents overnight in Prince Rupert

What’s age got to do with it? B.C. couple with 45-year gap talks happy marriage

An Armstrong couple that has 45-year age gap began turning heads after being featured on show Extreme Love.

B.C. men challenge constitutionality of Canada’s secret no-fly list

Parvkar Singh Dulai says he received a “denial of boarding” notification under the no-fly program last May 17

Murder on B.C. property didn’t need to be disclosed before sale, court rules

Buyer had tried to break contract after learning a man with ties to crime had been murdered there

B.C.’s largest Vaisakhi festival target of threatening Facebook post: Surrey RCMP

Police say they are investigating the posts on Facebook, after local MLA forwarded screenshots

Pug life: B.C. town boasts waggish list of dog names

Freedom-of-information request lists most ‘pupular’ dog names registered in White Rock

VIDEO: Fish farming company launches $30-million vessel to treat salmon for sea lice in B.C. waters

Freshwater treatment an improvement but fish farms should be removed from sea, says conservationist

Singh says childhood abuse steeled him for scrutiny and stress of politics

He recounts the assaults for the first time in his book Love & Courage

Despite five extra weeks’ parental leave in Canada, dads still face stigma: survey

One reason people said dads don’t need leave is because they can just bond with their kids at weekend

Vintage bottles, magic cards, a 1969 Playboy: Quirky items found in historic B.C. buildings

Crews set aside some of the funkier pieces emerging from the construction rubble

Most Read