FIFA announced on June 17, 111 that the 2026 World Cup will be jointly hosted by the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The World Cup group stage matches were expanded from 32 teams to 48 teams in a total of 80 games and played simultaneously in 16 cities in North America. Although it is not the first time that multiple countries have jointly hosted the World Cup, this is the first time that three countries have jointly hosted a World Cup, and it will surely become the grandest World Cup in history!
For the first time in history, the three countries jointly won the right to host the World Football Championship
The US-Canada-Mexico World Cup will start in 2026 as the 23rd World Cup. The United States, Canada, and Mexico announced their joint success at the 68th FIFA Congress in Moscow, beating Morocco in an overwhelming vote to secure the right to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup. The victory this time is not only the second time that the United States has hosted the competition since 1994, but also makes Mexico the country that has hosted the World Cup the most times.
Morocco has bid for the World Cup four times since 1994, but they all lost. However, the fifth campaign in 2018 still ended in failure, but the Moroccan Football Association will not give up lightly, and it is now announcing that it will compete. The right to host the 2030 FIFA World Cup.
FIFA expands participating teams to "48 teams"
FIFA has decided to implement a major expansion in the 2026 World Cup. The teams participating in the World Football Championship will be expanded from the current 32 teams to 48, and the World Cup group stage will be increased from the current 8 groups to 16 groups, with 3 in each group. The team and the 1st and 2nd who were originally promoted were also changed from the top 16 single-elimination round to the top 32 single-elimination round. For the final champion, this reform means one less group match and one more knockout match. The winning team still needs to play 7 games to reach the World Cup final, and all 80 games will be completed within 32 days.
FIFA believes that expanding the number of participating teams can not only enhance the influence of the event but also achieve the exchange of football culture in various countries. Whether it is investment sponsors or profits from business cooperation, it will be comprehensively improved. It can be described as a feat.
Many opponents worry that the reform of this major military expansion will not only be long and complicated for the players but also make the audience feel tedious and uninteresting. The excitement of the World Cup will be worn away as the event lengthens. However, profits and cooperation opportunities will also be affected. If you lose the public's original enthusiasm for the World Cup, it will not be worth the loss.
Voting may be for 'Trump' instead of 'World Football'
The selection method of the World Cup host country used to be voted by 22 senior officials of FIFA, but because the voting process was affected by too centralized and opaque power, FIFA fell into a black box accusation. Since US President Trump took office, there have been many complaints and voices about his many policies, and the anti-American trend in society has become stronger and stronger. The three countries of the United States, Canada, and Mexico are not only worried that this FIFA vote may be a vote of confidence in Trump. not the World Cup itself.
In this regard, FIFA decided to change the usual system. The voting rights of the 2026 World Cup will be reformed to "one association, one vote", and it will be open to 211 football associations around the world to jointly decide. Not only the president of the US Football Association also came out to explain the fire and emphasize voting fairness.
Where will the 2026 World Cup be played?
Even if the three countries jointly bid for the World Cup, the number of games is not evenly distributed. In a total of 80 games, Canada and Mexico will only hold 10 games each, and the remaining 60 games, including the semi-finals, semi-finals, and finals, will be played in the United States.
Due to the expansion of the World Cup to 48 teams, there are also more requirements for the venue of the city. On April 15, 2022, FIFA announced that Vancouver, Canada (BC Place Stadium) will be added to the candidate host city of the 2026 World Cup. , a total of 23 venues will be spread across North America. The distance between Edmonton, the northernmost arena, and Mexico City, the southernmost, is as long as 3,000 miles. Fighting a tough battle after a long journey.
In addition, the 2026 FIFA World Cup, which everyone is most concerned about, is expected to be held in the summer (June to July).