The United Bid Committee for the joint Canada-United States-Mexico FIFA World Cup bid for 2026 announced on Wednesday they have narrowed the list of host city candidates once more, to 32 locations around North America.
Nine cities were removed from contention to be official host cities should the joint bid be awarded the 2026 World Cup hosting rights, although the committee emphasized that cities that do not become official host cities can still play a significant role in hosting the World Cup in North America for the first time since 1994.
Of the 32 cities still in contention, all of the locales that have an MLS team in the market remain in the running: Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver in Canada, and Atlanta, Foxborough/Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York/New Jersey, Orlando, Philadelphia, Salt Lake City, San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. in the US. Of those, six (Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Atlanta, Foxborough and Seattle) have been proposed using venues currently used by MLS teams.
"We received applications from 41 cities across Canada, Mexico and the United States and narrowed the list after a comprehensive review of each of the communities and facilities. The 32 cities that we have identified as potential host cities, on their own and together, are prepared to welcome soccer fans from around the world. They are more than capable of helping fulfill the shared vision and ambition of FIFA and the United Bid in shaping the future of soccer in North America," said John Kristick, executive director of the United Bid Committee in a statement.
"While not every city will move forward as a potential host city, we were so impressed by all the applicants that we will continue to engage with all the cities as part of our hosting strategy and we will welcome the opportunity to work with FIFA to further expand our hosting concept to ensure the broadest possible impact for this spectacular event."
Potential bid cities:
- Mexico City
- Kansas City
- Las Vegas
- Los Angeles
- New York/New Jersey
- Salt Lake City
- San Francisco Bay Area
- Washington, D.C.