Donald Trump backs United States of America for 2026 World Cup bid with Canada, Mexico

Cheryl Sanders
April 13, 2017

On Monday, reporters convened on top of the Freedom Tower in New York City to listen to an announcement by Sunil Gulati, the president of the U.S. Soccer federation; Victor Montagliani, president of the Canadian Soccer Association; and Decio De Maria, president of the Mexico federation.

It remains unclear how Canada, Mexico and the United States will split up the locations for hosting the games, as well as where the more important and profitable games in the later stages of the tournament will take place.

Other than the Concacaf nations, only Morocco has so far expressed any real interest in running for 2026, with newly elected Confederation of African Football (CAF) president Ahmad Ahmad having backed a possible bid from the North African country, which previously lost out on 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010.

Gulati also allayed fears about potential immigration problems between the US government and teams traveling to the United States of America for the tournament.

"We don't believe that sport can't solve all the issues of the world", Gulati said.

Trump controversially made headlines on the campaign trail in regards to Mexico, whether it was his description of Mexican immigrants or his plans to build a wall along the border.

"I understand the feeling at present and it can be explained in many ways", said De Maria. The US has hosted the event once in 1994 while Mexico has hosted the event twice in 1970 and 1986.

The World Cup trophy is seen in the FIFA World Football Museum during its inauguration on February 28, 2016 in Zurich.Newly-elected FIFA president Gianni Infantino paid tribute to his disgraced predecessor in the job, Sepp Blatter, for the role he played in establishing a new $140million football museum which opened Sunday in Zurich. South America, Central America, Africa and Oceania are eligible to bid for the 2026 World Cup.

A joint bid by the USA, Canada and Mexico would also be able to handle the first edition of FIFA's expanding tournament, which goes from 32 to 48 teams in 2026.

The tournament will feature a total of 80 games with 60 held in the United States and 10 each being allocated to Canada and Mexico respectively.

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. After the controversial December 2010 vote that awarded the 2018 and 2022 World Cups - now the subject of a criminal investigation by Swiss authorities - the decision was returned to the broader voting body of 211 members.

"[The president] is especially pleased that Mexico is part of this bid". But under the proposals, the United States will host 75 percent of them. The Copa America Centenario - held in the United States last summer - stages its final at the MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, but there are no shortage of grounds, in various cities, that could fit the bill.

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