NEW YORK ( Associated Press) – As FIFA prepares to announce the venues for the 2026 World Cup on Thursday, ruling out major cities – Alan Rothenberg has slowed down the process of selecting stadiums for the 1994 tournament in the United States. remembered what he had orchestrated.
“They gave the rights to the host country, and the host took care of basically everything,” he said. “Here, everything is run by FIFA. It has been a long and difficult process. The requirements for cities have been really tough”.
A total of 17 stadiums in 16 metropolitan areas are bidding for a final list of between 10 and 12 that will stage games for the first World Cup with 48 teams in the United States, and in which Mexico and Canada co-operate. host.
According to FIFA’s plan, the United States will host 60 of the 80 games, including all games in the quarter-finals.
For 1994, the nine stadiums in the United States were announced at a press conference at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, 816 days before the opening game. This time the decisions will be revealed by FIFA 1,456 days in advance in a studio on the Fox network.
When evaluating candidate cities, several categories can be identified:
-Fixed: AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, and Met Life in East Rutherford, New Jersey, as well as Sophie’s in Inglewood or the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.
—approximately: Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta; M&T Bank in Baltimore; Gillette in Foxborough, Mass.; NRG in Houston; Arrowhead in Kansas City, Missouri; Hard Rock in Miami Gardens, Florida; Nissan in Nashville, Tennessee; Lincoln Financial Area in Philadelphia; Levi’s in Santa Clara, California; and Lumen Field in Seattle.
—Probably not: Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati; Empower Field Mile High in Denver; and Camping World in Orlando, Florida.
Telemundo commentator Andres Cantor said, “There are more than 17 cities capable of hosting the World Cup in this country, and it will be sad for those who have broadcast every tournament since 1990 and will participate in the announcement of the venue.” “But I don’t think that takes anything away from a fan’s enthusiasm to go to the game, no matter where their country plays in 2026.”
There’s no secret about the venues in Mexico and Canada, with 10 games in each country.
Mexicans proposed BBVA stadiums in Monterey in the north of the country as locations; Guadalajara’s Akron to the west; and the iconic Azteca in Mexico City, located downtown. The three cities have previously received matches in the World Cup held in the country, although the Monterey and Guadalajara stadiums have been built more recently.
The Azteca in Mexico’s capital was the scene of the 1970 and 1986 finals, and would become the first stadium with three World Cups.
“I have had the opportunity to be in other stadiums, yes they may be more modern, more beautiful, but they lose that soul, that heart and that history,” said Emilio Azcaraga, owner of the Mexican television network Televisa. Azteca Stadium. “And the stadium for 2026 is not only going to be the most functional stadium, but the stadium that will have the most soul and heart.”
Toronto’s BMO Field and Vancouver’s BC Place are Canada’s favorite destinations. Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton will not be considered.
Rothenberg says uncertainty remains in the bid between Sophie as of last week, which will require a costly renovation to expand the court’s dimensions and the Rose Bowl.
“The phone inquiries don’t stop right now,” he said on Tuesday. “The Los Angeles Local Committee will be in talks with FIFA until the moment of the announcement. Cost represents the most difficult aspect in Los Angeles”.
In 1994 there were only two contender places: the Rose Bowl and Orland. MLS clubs have built world-class sports cities, thus the United States has better infrastructure than before the World Cup, when Italy trained at Pingri, a high school in Basking Ridge, New Jersey.