2026 FIFA World Cup

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2026 FIFA World Cup
Tournament details
Teams 32 (expected) (from 5 or 6 confederations)

The 2026 FIFA World Cup will be the 23rd FIFA World Cup, an international association football tournament that is scheduled to take place in 2026. The tournament will involve 32 national teams, including that of the host nation, assuming the current format of the finals is maintained, but there have been suggestions to expand the tournament to 40 teams.[1][2]

Host selection[edit]

FIFA announced on October 29, 2007 that it will no longer continue with its continental rotation policy, implemented after the 2006 World Cup host selection. The newest host selection policy is that any country may bid for a World Cup, provided that their continental confederation has not hosted either of the previous two World Cups. For the 2026 World Cup, this means that bids from Asia and Europe are not allowed.[3][4]

FIFA formally allowed joint bids once more; they were previously banned in 2002 after the 2002 World Cup, hosted by South Korea and Japan. The reinstated joint bid rule indicates such a bid may have only one organizing committee. The Korea/Japan World Cup bid in 2002 had two different organizing committees.[5]

Confirmed bids[edit]

North America[edit]

In July 2012, Canadian Soccer Association president Victor Montagliani confirmed plans for a Canadian bid, saying: "We have verbally told FIFA that when the bid process begins for the next available World Cup, which would be the 2026 World Cup, that the CSA will be one of the countries putting in a formal proposal".[6] At the time the bid was announced, Canada had hosted the men's 1987 Under-16 World Championship and the U-20 World Cups for both men and women; the country has since hosted the 2014 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup and is set to host the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2015. In October 2013, Montagliani confirmed Canada's intention to bid for the 2026 tournament.[7] On January 23, 2014, the Canadian Soccer Association confirmed that it is bidding for the 2026 World Cup.[8]
In September 2012, Mexican Football Federation President Justino Compeán confirmed plans for a Mexican bid.[9] Mexico has hosted two previous World Cups in 1970 and 1986. In October 2013, Liga MX President said that Mexico is interested in joining forces with the U.S. to co-host a bid for the 2026 World Cup.[10] On December 9, 2014, the Mexican Football Federation confirmed that it is bidding for the 2026 World Cup.[11]

South America[edit]

In March 2010, Colombian President Álvaro Uribe confirmed plans for a Colombian bid.[12] At the 2011 FIFA U-20 World Cup final, FIFA president Sepp Blatter said "Colombia is ready for a World Cup".[13] Colombia was chosen to host the 1986 FIFA World Cup, but later withdrew. The country has since hosted the 2011 Under-20 World Cup and World Games 2013, and will host the 2016 FIFA Futsal World Cup. In July 2010, Peru also suggested co-hosting with Colombia and Ecuador, and President Uribe reacted positively, saying "every positive proposition has to be welcomed."[14][15]

Potential bids[edit]

On 13 December 2014, Adilbek Zhaksybekov announced a possible bid from Kazakhstan. However, no country from AFC or UEFA can bid for the 2026 World Cup under current bidding rules, as the previous two World Cups will have been held in Europe and Asia.[16][17]
Then minister of Youth and Sports, Moncef Belkhayat, said to the French daily Le Figaro: "The African Cup of Nations 2015 will be the first indicator of our ability to host a great event. Then we can confidently consider us as a candidate to host the World Cup 2026".[18][19] However, in November 2014, Morocco refused to host the African Cup of Nations due to the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa.
United States Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati stated the United States will only seriously consider going for the 2026 World Cup if the bidding process is more transparent and fair.[20] During the 2014 FIFA World Cup, FIFA Secretary General Jérôme Valcke said that he felt there was interest in the United States for hosting the 2026 Cup.[21] FIFA President Sepp Blatter said, “Perhaps there’s a big commercial opportunity arising now in the United States because of the tremendous television audiences that are booming and that the World Cup has also encouraged in its domestic game as well. We did well with football when it first went to the United States but the opportunities are bigger now." [22] The United States hosted the 1994 FIFA World Cup.

Broadcasting rights[edit]

FIFA has come in for criticism for the way Fox was awarded the rights: there was no tender process, the network receiving the rights in order to placate it regarding the move of the 2022 World Cup (which it has the rights to) from summer to winter time. Due to the lack of a tender, FIFA lost revenue. According to the BBC's sports editor Dan Roan, "As ever, it seemed, Fifa was looking after itself."[26]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Michel Platini calls for 40-team World Cup starting with Russia 2018". the Guardian. Retrieved 24 January 2015. 
  2. ^ "BBC Sport - Michel Platini's World Cup expansion plan unlikely - Fifa". BBC Sport. Retrieved 24 January 2015. 
  3. ^ "Rotation ends in 2018". FIFA.com – News Centre. 2007-10-29. 
  4. ^ "Fifa abandons World Cup rotation". BBC SPORT. 2007-10-29. 
  5. ^ "Blatter: There's indescribable anticipation". FIFA. 2010-06-07. 
  6. ^ "Canadian Soccer Association to bid for 2026 World Cup". CBC, Ben Rycroft. 6 July 2012. Retrieved 9 February 2013. 
  7. ^ "The race is on: Canada continues to plan on bid for 2026 World Cup". mlssoccer.com. Retrieved 13 December 2013. 
  8. ^ "Canada to bid for 2026 FIFA World Cup". CBC. Retrieved 23 January 2014. 
  9. ^ "Mexico to bid for 2026 World Cup". ESPN, Press Association. 21 September 2012. Retrieved 9 February 2013. 
  10. ^ "Report: Mexico would team up with USA to host 2026 World Cup tournament". MLS Soccer. 
  11. ^ "Buscará México la sede del Mundial 2026". Milenio. Retrieved 10 December 2014. 
  12. ^ "Colombia quiere organizar un Mundial". 
  13. ^ "Colombia está preparada para una Copa Mundial de mayores, dijo Blatter". 
  14. ^ Roorda, Jonathan (July 14, 2010). "Peru wants to host World Cup with Colombia and Ecuador". Colombia Reports. Retrieved February 25, 2014. 
  15. ^ "Peru aims to co-host 2026 World Cup with Ecuador, Colombia". Andina. July 13, 2010. Retrieved February 25, 2014. 
  16. ^ DPA (13 December 2014). "Kazajistán quiere albergar el Mundial de 2026". Sport. Retrieved 24 January 2015. 
  17. ^ "Kazakhstan eyes bid for 2026 World Cup". Retrieved 24 January 2015. 
  18. ^ "Le Maroc veut organiser la Coupe du monde en 2026". Le Figaro, Guillaume Errard. 24 March 2011. 
  19. ^ "المغرب يترشح لتنظيم مونديال 2026". Eurosport, Hamad Mousa. 2013-09-05. 
  20. ^ "Sunil Gulati says US Soccer will bid to host 2026 World Cup if FIFA clarifies process". New England Sports Network. 9 October 2013. Retrieved 9 October 2013. 
  21. ^ "FIFA leaders reveal that USA could make bid for 2026 World Cup". Fox Sports. 4 July 2014. Retrieved 7 July 2014. 
  22. ^ "FIFA President Sepp Blatter says 2026 World Cup probably should be in the United States". The Washington Post. 8 September 2014. Retrieved 30 September 2014. 
  23. ^ Sandomir, Richard. "Fox, Telemundo and Univision to Show World Cup Through 2026 as FIFA Extends Contracts". The New York Times. February 12, 2015.
  24. ^ "FIFA extending TV deals through 2026 World Cup with CTV, TSN and RDS". The Globe and Mail. February 12, 2015.
  25. ^ Parker, Ryan. "2026 World Cup TV rights awarded without bids; ESPN 'surprised'". Los Angeles Times. February 13, 2015.
  26. ^ "Qatar 2022: World Cup fall-out could tear football apart". BBC. Retrieved 25 February 2015.