The Anfield Talk’s Logan (@kidd9logan) takes a look at the United 2026 World Cup and the effects on each country’s National Teams.
For the first time in World Cup history, a bid that proposed three host nations has been selected by FIFA for the 2026 World Cup. It is not the first time that a World Cup has been hosted by more than one country; South Korea and Japan hosted the World Cup in 2002 and had a lack of major problems. Canada, Mexico and the United States will the first three countries to ever host the World Cup at once.
This will be the second World Cup that has been hosted by Canada. In 2015, the Women’s World Cup went off without a hitch and set attendance records for any other female FIFA competition. There is no doubt that the people of Canada are ready to host the World Cup, but is the World Cup ready to be hosted in Canada? The six different time zones are a main concern because of the quick turn around of matches. Although the participants of the 2015 Women’s World Cup did not complain about the time differences, it was very noticeable on the pitch; the flow of the matches were sluggish which caused very boring and low-scoring play. Edmonton, Montreal, and Toronto are the three proposed cities to host matches during the tournament. The three cities are some of the largest within Canada and are more the capable to host a tournament as big as the World Cup. Montreal and Toronto currently are homes to two Major League Soccer teams and set the bar for attendance and are definitely football mad. Edmonton however, are desperate for football since the city lost its only football team due to the collapse of the North American Soccer League. in 2016. The 2026 World Cup could be a great way to get football back into Edmonton and possibly into MLS. The three major stadiums that are being proposed to host matches during group play passed FIFA’s inspections with flying colours and are going to undergo renovations in the coming years.
The Canadian Men’s National Team has had its ups and downs over the last four decades. The only qualification that the national team has had was in 1986, but they failed to make it out of the group. Currently, the future is looking bright for the team as the number of Canadian football players making it into professional leagues are increasing and the sport is on the rise in the country. With the 2026 World Cup making its way to North America, the Canadian Soccer Association President, Steve Reed, believes that it will expose the game to more of the youth and inspire them to start learning the game.
Mexico will be the first country to ever host three World Cups. The last one being in 1986, the 2026 World Cup hopes to less chaotic and more enjoyable for the fans. In 1986, the players and the spectators alike had to deal with the punishing heat and draining altitude. Along with the climate, the organisers of the World Cup did not do a very good job of putting the tournament together. The scenes in and around the stadiums were very chaotic and the facilities for those who were covering the World Cup and the squads were simply atrocious. The Mexican Footballing Association has since upgraded many of the stadiums and training facilities. The three host cities in Guadalajara, Mexico City, and Monterrey all have experience in hosting large tournaments. Each of the three cities were sites that were utilised during the 1986 World Cup and they each have hosted the CONCACAF Champions League. The upgrades to the stadiums and training facilities along with the help of Canada and the United States, assures that the organisation of the matches in Mexico will be well thought out and sustainable.
The Mexican National team is at a point in which if they do not perform well in this years World Cup, then the entire Footballing Association will take the blame for it. The quality of the players is not lacking, but the quality of the manager and association is. Mexican fans are among some of the hardest fans to please and if they do not get what they deserve in at least a trip to the Round of 16 this year, definitely expect Juan Carlos Osorio, the current manager, to be sacked. Looking forward for the Mexican National Team, the future is bright. With a large amount of players making their way to Europe and blossoming in some of the biggest leagues, the 2026 World Cup could see them as one of the big contenders along with Germany and Spain.
United States of America
The 2026 World Cup will be the second World Cup that will be hosted in the United States of America. In 1994, the tournament was held in nine cities across America without any arising problems. In the bid, there are 17 different cities across America that are potential host cities, due to each of the cities proposed are large enough and have plenty to offer to the tournament to satisfy each of the 48 nations that will be participating. MetLife Stadium in New York, is set to be the site of the final. All of the stadiums passed FIFA’s evaluations with flying colours. In cooperation with Major League Soccer and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the United bid was granted access to use all of their state of the art facilities during the span of the tournament. The concern with the United States bid is the time zones. The for time zones span across the country and could play a role in the tournament. Although there is only a three hour time difference from the east coast to the west coast, the quick turnarounds after each match can play a role in the outcome of matches.
After the catastrophic events of the last year for the United States Men’s National Team, the 2026 World Cup could rejuvenate the interest in football around the country. The support for the National team has slowly started to swindle due to the lack of qualification for the this year’s tournament. The future of the of the National team hung in the balance at the start of 2018 as former President, Sunil Gulati, stepped down. Carlos Cordeiro was elected in February and the state of the team has not changed. The only promising hope for the team is the large amount of youth coming through the system. The likes of Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, and Matt Miazga have the fans excited for the future. With having the World Cup in America, Carlos Cordeiro is hoping to gain more attention and interest in football around the country. He is also trying to show his many critics that he is the right man to run the United States Soccer Federation.
The Main Concern:
The main concern of the United 2026 World Cup is Donald Trump and his policies. Trump has a very tight agenda on immigration and the acceptance of visas from various parts of the world. If his agenda on immigration and visas do uphold into 2026, many countries may not be able to send fans to cheer on their national team in the United States. Another concern is Trump and his relations with Canada and Mexico. In order to have a successful World Cup with three nations, the cooperation from all three must be on the same agenda and cannot conflict if the tournament is to go off without any problems. If the cooperation from all three countries can come together on the same agenda for the tournament, then the 2026 World Cup will be a success.