Mexico City’s iconic Azteca Stadium and SoFi’s multibillion-dollar Los Angeles Rams were among 16 venues named Thursday to host matches for the 2026 World Cup, which will take place in the US, Canada and Mexico.
In a TV announcement in New York City, officials confirmed that 11 U.S. cities will host the venue, as well as three locations in Mexico and two in Canada to host the first-ever World Cup to feature three countries and the first to feature 48 teams.
Venues in the United States are all stadiums used by NFL teams, including New York’s MetLife Stadium and the $5 billion SoFi Rams Stadium in Los Angeles, which hosted the Super Bowl this year.
Both stadiums are being considered as contenders for hosting the 2026 final.
The 2026 tournament marks the first time that three countries have hosted the World Cup, with most of the games taking place in the United States. Sixty games will be played in the US, while Mexico and Canada will play 10 games each.
Mexico will host the final for the third time after hosting it alone in 1970 and 1986.
The Azteca Stadium in Mexico City, named one of the stadiums on Thursday, will be the first stadium to compete in three separate World Cups.
Other Mexican venues include Estadio Akron in Guadalajara and Estadio BBVA in Monterrey.
Canadian host cities include BC Place in Vancouver and BMO Field in Toronto.
– Super Bowl Pedigree –
The list of US venues stretches from coast to coast, including several cities that hosted games from the 1994 World Cup final. However, the stadiums of the 1994 tournament will not be repeated in 2026.
Other venues include Arlington’s giant Dallas Cowboys AT&T Stadium and Miami Dolphins’ Hard Rock Stadium, among seven of 11 venues named Thursday that hosted the Super Bowl.
Arrowhead Stadium in the Kansas City Chiefs – the loudest stadium in the world according to Guinness World Records – also made the list.
The list also includes NFL stadiums in Seattle, San Francisco, Atlanta, Houston, Boston and Philadelphia.
Many of the US venues named Thursday competed in the 2016 America’s Cup, which was held in the United States. MetLife Stadium in New Jersey hosted the final of this tournament in front of a crowd of 82,026 fans.
However, the venue for the 1994 World Cup Finals, the iconic Pasadena Rose Bowl in suburban Los Angeles, was not included.
The cities that will host the opening game and the 2026 final were not disclosed on Thursday.
FIFA president Gianni Infantino said in an interview with Fox television after the venue was announced that decisions on the opening game and final would be made at a later date.
“We are not in a hurry with this decision,” said Infantino.
“There is still discussion, and we will definitely choose the best cities for the opening and finals.
“But every match will be a final in this World Cup.”
While all three host countries will participate in games from the group stage to the round of 16, the United States will host all games from the quarter-finals onward.