FIFA, the body that oversees world football, announced on Sunday that the 2026 World Cup final and its full schedule will take place in New Jersey, home of the New York Giants and New York Jets of the National Football League.
The 48-team World Cup is co-hosted by the United States, Canada, and Mexico. It will end on July 19 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford.
In total, Canada will host 13 games, with 10 of those taking place in the group stage in Vancouver and Toronto, respectively. Additionally, Mexico will play 13 games total, ten of which will be in Mexico City, Guadalajara, and Monterrey during the group stage. Eleven American cities will host the remaining tournament rounds.
The home openers for each national team will be held in Toronto, Mexico City, and Los Angeles.
The 82,500-seat open-air stadium served as the venue for the 2016 Copa America Centenario final, in which Chile defeated Argentina on penalties for the second time, defeating Lionel Messi’s team. The stadium opened in 2010.
The game kickoff times were not released by FIFA.
On June 11, Mexico will play the first game of the tournament at Mexico City’s Estadio Azteca, making history as the first country to host the World Cup three times. There will also be a game in Guadalajara on the first day.
In remarks that were translated, Mexico’s head coach Jaime Lozano stated that although his team will be under pressure to perform in front of home supporters, they are thrilled to be playing in the opening game and that today is a special day for both the national team and him.
Mexico hosted the World Cup in 1970 and 1986. At the Estadio Azteca, Brazil’s Pele defeated Italy 4-1 and Argentina’s Diego Maradona defeated West Germany 3-2 in the championship games.
At the same location, Maradona also scored the historic “Hand of God” goal and the “Goal of the Century” during a 2-1 triumph over England in the quarterfinals of 1986.
The Major League Soccer team in Toronto, Canada, will host the inaugural World Cup match on June 12 at their home ground. Meanwhile, the NFL’s Los Angeles stadium will host the opening match in the United States.
The group stage will be held in the home nations of each tournament host; the US will remain on the West Coast, playing twice in Los Angeles and once in Seattle.
Gregg Berhalter, the head coach of the U.S. men’s national team, stated, “We really count on the public getting behind us.”
It’s a terrific group of guys, so I’m excited for the general public to meet some of our players and form a genuine personal bond with them.
Mexico will play twice at Estadio Azteca and once in Guadalajara, while Canada will play one group stage match in Toronto and two in Vancouver.
Although Canada has only scored one goal in their two World Cup appearances and is winless in six games, interim head coach Mauro Biello acknowledged that expectations will be considerably higher when playing at home.
I remember that match in Qatar when we got our first goal, and I have no doubt that it will be a historic moment for this nation when we win for the first time, stated Biello.
Beginning with the quarterfinal round, which will take place in Los Angeles, Kansas City, Miami, and Boston, the tournament will be held entirely in the United States.
The two semi-finals will take place in Dallas and Atlanta; the third-place playoff will take place in Miami; and on July 4, in honor of the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, a Round of 16 game will take place in Philadelphia.
The World Cup of 2026 will comprise 104 matches, as opposed to the customary 64 games, and an extra knockout round as a result of the previously declared decision to increase the number of participating teams from 32 to 48.
Because the 16 host cities are so far apart and have such varying climates, FIFA decided to separate the venues into three regions: east, central, and west.