The World Cup is coming back to the United States... and Canada, and Mexico. On Wednesday, June 13, a delegation representing the three North American countries won the bid to host the competition eight years from now, which means a whole lot of opportunities for traveling around the country for a once-in-a-lifetime event. But exactly where is the 2026 World Cup in America being held?
Not all the specifics are ironed out, but here's what is definite so far.
Out of the 80 games that will be played during the 2026 tournament, 60 will be played in the United States, while 10 will be played in Mexico and Canada each.
The 10 games in Canada will be split among the host cities of Edmonton, Montréal, and Toronto. In Mexico, 10 games will be split between Monterrey, Guadalajara, and Mexico City.
The Unites States meanwhile, is prepared to host games in 17 different cities. The key word is prepared, though. Only 10 of those 17 prospective host sites will end up hosting games. Those 17 sites are: Seattle, the San Francisco Bay area, Los Angeles, Denver, Kansas City, Dallas, Houston, Nashville, Atlanta, Orlando, Miami, Washington D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia, Boston and the New York/New Jersey area.
The 2026 World Cup will feature 48 teams, an expansion from the 32-team tournament that is being held present day. The last eight matches of the 2026 tournament — the quarterfinal, semifinal, third-place, and final games — will all be hosted at American sites.
The championship match is set to be played at Metlife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, the home stadium of the New York Jets and the New York Giants, located just outside of Manhattan.
The host nation for the 2026 World Cup was decided in Moscow, just a day before the 2018 tournament kicks off in Russia.
Here's how the vote went down.
Soccer's international governing body, Fédération Internationale de Football Association (known more simply as FIFA), held its 68th congress on Wednesday, a meeting of delegates that represent the 200-plus member nations that compete internationally.
The congress featured many orders of business — a speech from Russian President Vladimir Putin, for example — but the most consequential action was the vote for the 2026 World Cup host nation.
The North American bid earned 134 votes, handily beating the only other competing bid, Morocco's, which received 65 votes. Only one of the 200 voting delegations abstained, Iran.
The joint bid from Canada, Mexico, and the United States means that the World Cup will return to American soil for the first time in over three decades. The last time the United States hosted the tournament was in 1994, which was held across nine host cities and featured 24 teams, half the amount of nations that will compete in 2026.
Mexico hosted the World Cup in both 1970 and 1986. Meanwhile, the 2026 tournament will represent the first time that a men's World Cup match is hosted on Canadian soil. In 2015, Canada hosted the women's World Cup, which was won by the United States.
For the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF), Wednesday's winning bid can be seen as both a huge victory and a consolation. In 2017, the men's national team suffered an embarrassing failure to qualify for the 2018 tournament, via a loss to Trinidad and Tobago on the final day of the qualifying stage.
Years earlier, in 2010, the USSF failed to win the bid for the 2022 World Cup, losing the hosting rights to Qatar.
Since then, FIFA had become the subject of a crackdown by the U.S. Justice Department, which resulted in the 2015 arrests of top executives at the international governing body. In the aftermath of the controversy, FIFA made major changes, including one to its voting practices. In 2010, the vote for the 2022 World Cup bid was held among 22 executive committee members.
In 2018, the votes was held among member nations. The United States, Mexico, and Canada won that bid comfortably, and now the World Cup is coming to (North) America.