Mexico USA in Joint Bid
- Author: Angelo Rivera Apr 21, 2017,
Apr 21, 2017, 16:40
The United States, Mexico and Canada have officially submitted a joint bid for the 2026 World Cup.
At the press conference at One World Trade Center, Gulati acknowledged as much. Under the current proposal, the US would host the majority of the games, 60, with the other 20 split evenly between Mexico and Canada.
They are seeking to host the first World Cup with an expanded 48-nation field.
"We have the full support of the United States government in this project", Sunil Gulati said in his opening remarks.
Earlier this year, Trump signed directives to begin building a wall along USA border with Mexico and crack down on United States cities that shield undocumented immigrants.
"We've first got to obtain the World Cup and what we're most focused on right now is making sure that the World Cup comes to CONCACAF, comes to North America", said Gulati.
"So we're not at all concerned about some of the issues that other people may raise".
The last time the U.S. held the quadrennial worldwide football tournament was in 1994, with Mexico hosting twice, in 1970 and 1986.
The proposal suggests that the USA will host 60 games, including all matches from the quarter-finals onwards, whilst Mexico and Canada will host 10 each. Canada hosted the 2015 Women's World Cup, but every venue used was composed of artificial turf - a decision that was widely derided.
In terms of games in Canada, it's likely that Federation Internationale de Football Association would stipulate that all matches would have to be played on natural grass, after the 2015 Women's World Cup held on Canadian soil was played entirely on artificial surfaces. Meaning that this bid's biggest challengers would come from Africa or South America. Canada is yet to host the event. South America last hosted the World Cup in 2014 (Brazil).
European and Asian countries are ineligible from bidding on the 2026 World Cup, so the CONCACAF-led bid is considered the likely choice to land the tournament.
Having pushed through his plan to expand the World Cup from 32 teams in January, Infantino is said to be supportive of joint bids. Federation Internationale de Football Association has recently voted to bar Europe or Asia from bidding for the 2026 World Cup because their respective confederations will already be hosting the 2018 (Russia) and 2022 (Qatar) tournaments.
The heads of the organizations said at a news conference in NY that the three North American countries had been discussing the idea of a joint bid quietly for three or four years. "In the end, it was a discussion, a negotiation, but a very friendly one", Gulati explained.
US Soccer President Sunil Gulati was asked about the impact of Trump's policy toward Mexicans on relations between the countries as he presented the bid alongside his counterparts from Mexico and Canada in NY.