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US, Canada, Mexico launch joint 2026 World Cup bid
April 30 2017, 06:47 | Van Peters
World Cup 2026: USA, Canada & Mexico to make joint bid
"We gave careful consideration to the prospect of bidding for the 2026 FIFA World Cup, and ultimately feel strongly this is the right thing for our region and for our sport".
The federations of Canada, Mexico and the United States announced on Saturday that their respective presidents will make an "historic announcement" at One World Observatory atop the One World Trade Center in downtown New York City.
Gulati said the USA looked into making a solo bid - similar efforts to land the 2018 and 2022 World Cups failed - but he said he believed the proposal had a greater chance to be selected in coordination with Canada and Mexico.
CONCACAF hosted the World Cup in 1970 and 1986 (both Mexico) and 1994 (U.S.).
"Before this conference is over we will sign a memorandum of understanding between the three of our countries, signifying we will bid together".
The 2018 World Cup will be in Russian Federation while Qatar hosts the tournament in 2022. All Iraq's "home" games in 2018 World Cup qualifying have been played in neutral Iran or Malaysia.
By the time 2026 rolls around, it will have been 32 years (and seven tournaments) since the World Cup was held in North America.
Argentina and Uruguay - the original World Cup host in 1930 - are focused on a centenary tournament in 2030, however.
The biggest games would all belong to the United States. All matches from the quarter-finals onwards would be in the U.S. which hosted in 1994.
The election of Donald Trump as United States president has heightened political tensions with neighbours Mexico, but Gulati insisted Trump supported and actively encouraged their involvement in the bid.
He also said the three-nation partnership has the blessing and encouragement of U.S. President Donald Trump, who plans to build a wall along the U.S. -Mexico border and whose immigration policies have created public doubts about where the U.S. government would stand on a joint bid. Europe and Asia are not eligible to bid this time because they hosted recent games.
But Gulati said that President Trump is "supportive" of the bid and had "encouraged" it.
All World Cup bids must be submitted by December 2018.
Victor Montagliani, the CONCACAF President and President of the Canadian Soccer Association, says that "we'll respond accordingly" if FIFA were to require grass pitches for the Canadian venues. In the end, Federation Internationale de Football Association became involved and an agreement was reached where "Korea/Japan" was used for the name, Japan was awarded the final and South Korea hosted the opening match. A vote is tentatively set for May 2020.
"We still have to get this World Cup, but if that happens in the next while, then we'll have a north star", Montagliani told Postmedia.