North America will host the 2026 World Cup.
Host cities in the U.S., Mexico and Canada will comprise the 2026 event, which was awarded to North America on Wednesday over Morocco on the eve of the 2018 FIFA World Cup opening match in Russia.
North America had 134 votes out of 200 possible ballots, with Morocco earning 65 from the panel. Iran chose neither option and Spain was one of three countries to abstain.
The event will be expanded to 48 teams from 32.
FIFA has never awarded the World Cup to a three-nation bid. As part of a joint bid, 60 of 80 games are scheduled to be played in the United States. The final of the expanded tournament will be played at MetLife Stadium in New York.
“The decision to host World Cup 2026 in Canada, Mexico and the United States is a testament to our three nations coming together for the United Bid, and a monumental step in our collective mission to further advance the game of soccer in North America,” Major League Soccer commissioner Don Garber said in statement.
“We congratulate all of those who worked tirelessly to bring the World Cup back to North America and thank the countries that voted for the United Bid, and for their belief in our vision for the future of the sport in our region. There is no doubt that World Cup 2026 will elevate the sport of soccer to entirely new levels and Major League Soccer is honored to be a part of this joyous day.”
The United States last hosted the World Cup in 1994.
Denver is one of approximately 23 potential host cities under consideration, although the announcement of host cities may not be made until 2021.
“Today is a big day!,” the Colorado Rapids, Stadium Management Company and the Denver Sports Commission said in a joint statement. “We are pleased The United Bid Committee (UBC) has been awarded hosting rights for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. The UBC should be congratulated on all the hard work done to get to this point. This announcement marks the beginning of a lengthy process to determine what cities will host games in the tournament.
“Denver is a world-class city and soccer destination, and our history of hosting extremely successful international soccer games and our enthusiastic fan base gives us confidence that – if selected – Denver and the region would be excited to see the World Cup take place at the Broncos’ stadium. Current studies indicate that host cities can see an economic impact of as much $360 million.”