Courtesy of FIFA via Twitter
Courtesy of FIFA via Twitter

The United Bid of Canada, Mexico and the United States have been selected by the 68th FIFA Congress in Moscow to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

For the first time in history, FIFA’s member associations were given the opportunity to vote on the host for the FIFA World Cup, of which the District of Columbia has been part of the most comprehensive and far-reaching hosting strategy ever developed for a mega-sporting event.

“Hosting the World Cup in Washington, D.C., could provide hundreds of millions in economic impact for the city,” said Elliott Ferguson II, president and CEO of Destination DC. “Washington, D.C., is clearly a destination for sports fans, with incredible professional teams as well as special events. There’s a ton of momentum in the city following the Caps’ 2018 Stanley Cup win and we’re getting ready to host the MLB All-Star Game in July. We’re thrilled to potentially add the World Cup 2026 to our lineup and welcome soccer fans from around the globe.”

Wednesday’s vote of 135 to 65 marks the first time three nations have been selected to co‐host a FIFA World Cup and the first time the FIFA World Cup will be played in North America in 32 years. The United States will stage 60 of the 80 matches, including all from the quarterfinals on, while Mexico and Canada will get 10 apiece.

Twenty-three cities, including D.C., are in the running to become the 16 match venues.

“As the #SportsCapital, we are thrilled that the United States will serve as one of the hosts for the 2026 World Cup and even more excited that Washington, D.C., is part of the winning bid,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser. “As the world saw this past week, Washington, D.C., is a city of champions — one that has a has a longstanding history of hosting global events and creating unforgettable memories.”

Max Brown, chair of the Events DC board of directors, said that the District is etched with rich soccer sports memories and celebrations from across the city whether at the iconic RFK Stadium or FedEx Field.

“Joining the United Bid builds on the legacy that D.C. has cemented as an international soccer city and will inspire the next generation of Washingtonians for years to come,” Brown said.

In addition to D.C., the United Bid’s final candidate host cities are:

Canada: Edmonton, Montreal, Toronto

Mexico: Guadalajara, Mexico City, Monterrey

United States: Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New Jersey/New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, San Francisco Bay Area and Seattle

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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