The United States, along with Canada and Mexico, has won the right to host the 2026 World Cup. It’s been 32 years since North America earned the right to play host.
President Donald Trump played a big role in securing the bid, writing three letters to FIFA President Gianni Infantino promising to ease his travel ban to allow foreign teams, officials, and fans to travel to the U.S. for the World Cup without restriction.
“[A]ll eligible athletes, officials and fans from all countries around the world would be able to enter the United States without discrimination, in keeping with FIFA's requirements and subject to the impartial application of United States law,” the president wrote in his most recent letter.
President Trump also made it clear that the U.S. should be able to host the 2026 World Cup.
“The U.S. has put together a STRONG bid w/ Canada & Mexico for the 2026 World Cup. It would be a shame if countries that we always support were to lobby against the U.S. bid. Why should we be supporting these countries when they don’t support us (including at the United Nations),” he tweeted.
The U.S. has "proposed the Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.) for the opener; Mercedes-Benz Stadium (Atlanta) and AT&T Stadium (Arlington, Tex.) for semifinals; and MetLife Stadium (East Rutherford, N.J.) for the final," Yahoo! News reported. The United bid is predicted to bring in $14 billion in revenue, a number that blows previous records out of the water.
Former President Barack Obama tried — and failed — to bring the World Cup back to the United States in 2018. He also wrote directly to then-FIFA President Sepp Blatter.
"Soccer is truly the world's sport, and the World Cup promotes camaraderie and friendly competition across the globe," Obama wrote. "That is why this bid is about much more than a game. It is about the United States of America inviting the world to gather all across our great country in celebration of our common hopes and dreams.”
Obama’s plea apparently wasn’t enough to move the needle.
Featured image credit: Evan El-Amin/Shutterstock.com