FIFA is preparing to name the 2026 World Cup host cities on Thursday, and as we get closer to the announcement, the picture is getting a bit clearer as to who will host as cities set announcement watch parties from Seattle to Kansas City. Set to be the first World Cup with 48 teams, the host city announcement comes four years after FIFA selected the United States, Mexico and Canada to host the games. There were 22 host cities still in the running this week to be selected, with between 10 and 12 American cities expected to be chosen with Canadian cities Vancouver, Edmonton and Toronto, along with Mexico's Guadalajara, Mexico City and Monterrey looking like strong possibilities to host, according to Reuters.
For the United States, Los Angeles and New York/New Jersey figure to be locks to host matches. Los Angeles has the $5.5 billion SoFi Stadium that hosted Super Bowl LVI, while New Jersey's MetLife Stadium has hosted a Copa America final and figures to have multiple games in this competition.
Cities also in contention include Dallas, Boston, San Francisco, Orlando and a joint-bid between Washington D.C. and Baltimore.
Here's what to know:
Expected front-runners in United States
- New York/New Jersey (Metlife Stadium)
- Dallas (AT&T Stadium)
- Los Angeles (SoFi Stadium)
- Atlanta (Mercedes-Benz Stadium)
- Philadelphia (Lincoln Financial Field)
- San Francisco (Levi's Stadium)
- Houston (NRG Stadium)
- Seattle (Lumen Field)
Who else is in the running?
- Kansas City (Arrowhead Stadium)
- Baltimore/Washington D.C. (M&T Bank Stadium)
- Miami (Hard Rock Stadium)
- Boston (Gillette Stadium)
- Denver (Empower Field)
- Orlando (Camping World Stadium)
- Cincinnati (Paul Brown Stadium)
- Nashville (venue TBD)
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How many games will there be and how many in USA?
This World Cup will feature 80 games, 16 more than the current format of 64 matches. 60 of the matches will be played in the United States, with every game from the quarterfinals to the final taking place on American soil.
How many games will each city host?
That is still to be determined, but the original proposal was for each to get at least five games. And with the field expanding to 48 teams, it seems likely that each American city would get to host at least one knockout stage match.
How to watch the announcement
Date: Thursday, June 15 | Time: 5 p.m. ET
Location: New York City, United States
TV: FS1 | Stream: fuboTV (Try for free)