The joint North American bid defeated the bid of Morocco 134-65, with one vote for “None of the bids”.
Seventeen sites across the United States will host, including Philadelphia and East Rutherford, NJ, which will host the 2026 World Cup Final at MetLife Stadium.
It will come 32 years after the U.S. first hosted the 1994 World Cup, an event which kicked off the popularity of the sport in America. It will also be played during the 250th anniversary celebrations of the country, founded in 1776. Mexico will host games for a record third time, after the 1970 and 1986 editions.
The 2026 tournament will be the first to have 48 teams. The current format has 32 teams, split into eight groups of four, with the top two teams in each group progressing to the round-of-16 knockout stage. It will be the same for the 2022 tournament in Qatar.
Starting in 2026, there will be 16 groups of three teams, with the top two teams in the group advancing into the expanded round-of-32 knockout stages. The finalists will still play seven games.
The new format will increase the amount of games at the tournament from 64 to 80. Mexico and Canada will each host 10 games, while America will get 60. All games from the quarterfinal round onto the final will be played in the USA.
The host team always qualifies for the tournament, but there are questions about whether or not all three countries will be given automatic berths. FIFA will discuss it in the coming weeks.
Canada has not qualified since 1986, which is the last time the USA did not qualify, before 2018. Mexico is the lone team of the three to represent the CONCACAF Federation in Russia, and will play in Group G. It will open on Sunday with defending champion Germany (11 a.m. EDT FS1 and Fubo.tv) in Moscow, and then take on South Korea Saturday, June 23 (11 a.m. EDT FOX and Fubo.tv) and Sweden Wednesday, June 27 (10 a.m. EDT FOX and Fubo.tv).
In other World Cup news, the Royal Spanish Football Federation fired manager Julen Lopetegui on the eve of the tournament.
Lopetegui, who was hired as the new Real Madrid head coach Tuesday on a three-year contract, was sacked by RSFF president Luis Rubiales Wednesday. Rubiales was supposed to be at the FIFA Congress to vote on the 2026 bid, but flew out to Spain’s training base at Krasnodar to fire his manager.
“We have been forced to dispense with the national coach. We wish him the greatest of luck,” said Rubiales.
“The negotiations have occurred without any information to the Spanish FA and we were informed just five minutes before the press release. There’s a way to act that needs to be fulfilled.”
Fernando Hierro, who was an assistant coach, will take over the squad. Spain plays Portugal Friday, at 2 p.m. EDT (FOX and Fubo.tv), Iran on Wednesday, June 20 at 2 p.m. EDT (FOX and Fubo.tv), and Morocco on Monday, June 25 at 2 p.m. EDT (FS1 and Fubo.tv).
“Fernando Hierro will assume the position of national coach in the World Championship of Russia and will appear before the media accompanied by the president of the RFEF, Luis Rubiales,” read a statement on the Spanish Football Federation website.
“Next, he will direct his first training and on Friday he will debut in Sochi at the match of Spain against Portugal.”
Contact Sean Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @TheProdigalSean His weekly podcast, Box to Box Football, can be found on iTunes here https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/box-to-box-football/id1208561351?mt=