No regrets backing Morocco bid - Mwendwa

Ronaldo, pop star Robbie Williams on stage to kick off World Cup opening ceremony

The U.S. men's national team failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation, but American soccer just received a massive boost: On the eve of the sport's biggest spectacle, FIFA members voted to award the 2026 World Cup jointly to the United States, Mexico and Canada.

The North American bid was awarded the 2026 World Cup by a 134-65 vote over Morocco, which had thrown itself into the mix on the last day possible past year, then tried to garner support be denouncing the United Bid and more specifically President Donald Trump.

Morocco's presentation took some not-so-subtle shots at the USA, highlighting the fact that guns are banned in Morocco and stating that during the 1994 World Cup even world-renowned soccer stars were unknown in America.

"It really is a once-in-a-generation opportunity", John Tory said.

With Russia hosting in 2018 and Qatar in 2022, no countries from either Europe or Asia were allowed to bid for the 2026 tournament.

It's expected that Canada and Mexico will stage 10 games each with the US hosting 60. "I'm grateful to everyone who has worked so hard to get us to this point".

Steven Reed, president of the Canadian Soccer Association, called the FIFA Congress decision "an extraordinary honour and privilege".

Delegates had been faced with a clear choice - the joint North American bid boasts modern, established stadiums and well-developed transport links underpinned by Mexican football fervour.

The other African defectors were Benin, Botswana, the Cape Verde Islands, Lesotho, Liberia, Namibia and Sierra Leone and, although mathematically their loss was not decisive, the prospect of a failure to get Africa solidly behind Morocco's bid did damage its cause, officials added.

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With the breakdown of voting results made public, the United bid claimed 134 votes, with 64 giving their support to Morocco and one country voting for neither bid. FIFA's bid evaluation report scored it significantly higher than the Morocco bid, with United 2026 earning a score of 4.0 out of five, while Morocco scored 2.7, and the voters responded.

Four current MLS stadiums (Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Gillette Stadium outside of Boston, Seattle's CenturyLink Field and BMO Field in Toronto) are in the mix for World Cup matches.

The 2026 award is also a victory for many of FIFA's corporate partners, which will have the advantage of more teams and the world's biggest media market.

The games will be played in 16 cities.

The United States will be joined by Canada and Mexico in hosting the 2026 World Cup, FIFA has announced.

"Morocco was quick to congratulate the victor, tweeting "#Maroc2026 congratulates @United2026 on their victory".

South America (CONMEBOL) voted 9-1 for the North American bid with Brazil opting for Morocco.

Under the United Bid proposal, the list of host cities for the world's most watched sporting event likely will include two or three in Canada, three in Mexico and 10 in the United States.

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