The 2026 men's World Cup will officially be held in North America it was announced on Wednesday, after the U.S., Canada and Mexico joined in submitting the winning bid to FIFA's governing body.
Considering the "football"....err, soccer tournament is the earth's most-watched sporting event, this is kind of a big deal.
How was that decided?
Dubbed as the "United Bid," the proposal submitted by the North American trio of countries was considered a no-brainer all along due to anticipated record revenues and crowds as American sports fans are increasingly embracing soccer...I mean, "world football."
In the last hour, Morocco also submitted a bid, but the United plan won with a nod from FIFA's member associations by a vote of 134 to 65.
For more than ten years, the United partners analyzed, strategized, and schmoozed in order to handily convince the world that they could provide the most superior venues for such an affair.
With the 2026 tournament being expanded to 48 teams, the United States in particular — with seventeen stadiums at the ready and more that can be renovated — can easily provide accommodations for the games, players, and fans.
For serving as hosts, the US and its neighbors' teams will all be automatically qualified to compete in the 2026 tournament.
America will host the lion's share of games, prospectively 60 out of 80, with Canada and Mexico splitting the rest between possible cities such as Monterrey, Montreal, and Toronto.
The U.S. has several options of cities who are able to host matches, with Atlanta, Arlington, and Pasadena making the short list. MetLife Stadium in Rutherford, New Jersey, is currently slated to host the final.
Of course, there have also been some haters like the BBC, who asked whether or not the three countries could get along well enough to pull it off together. But fears were alleviated when political naysayers realized that President Trump would not longer be in office by 2026, even if he wins a second term.
Inspectors wrote that their concerns over risk pertaining to the United plan were "human rights standards" and "government support." Which Yahoo said "obviously pertain to President Donald Trump."
Namely, FIFA members expressed a degree of apprehension due to Trump's "travel ban," saying, "Due to new entry regulations that are currently being proposed in the United States in relation to citizens from certain countries, there are significant risks to discrimination-free entry to the country."
But the Trump Administration assured that council in a letter that "all eligible athletes, officials and fans from all countries around the world would be able to enter the United States without discrimination."