FIFA has unveiled sixteen North American host cities for the highly-anticipated 2026 World Cup, one of which is the SF Bay Area. Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara won a bid to host the matches.
The 48-team tournament will take place across cities in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. It’s the second time that multiple countries have been selected to host the Cup at one time, the last being Japan and South Korea in 2002.
Santa Clara recently won a bid to host the FIFA World Cup at Levi’s Stadium. Stanford Stadium and Spartan Stadium (now CEFCU Stadium) in San Jose have been used in past FIFA events.
The San Francisco Bay Area was selected as one of eleven U.S. host cities largely because of the Bay Area’s legacy of highly-decorated home teams, from the Giants to the 49ers to the Warriors.
FIFA cites “international matches during the 1984 Olympics, 1994 FIFA World Cup USA™ and FIFA Women’s World Cup USA 1999™” as additional significant moments in Bay Area sports history.
“We are absolutely thrilled to bring the world’s largest sporting event to our passionate and diverse Bay Area community. While we will celebrate today, tomorrow marks the beginning of a long and fulfilling road to our first FIFA World Cup match in 2026,” said Patricia Ernstrom, Bay Area Host Committee Executive Director.
“Over the past eight years, innovative technology, sustainability and fan-focused design elements have cemented Levi’s Stadium among the premier sports and entertainment venues in the country. This venue was made to host events like the FIFA World Cup™, an event that will generate ongoing economic activity for our region for the next four years and beyond,” said Al Guido, 49ers President and Bay Area Host Committee Board President.
The eleven U.S. host cities are San Francisco, Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, New York-New Jersey area, Philadelphia, and Seattle.
Monterrey, Mexico City, and Guadalajara will serve as host cities in Mexico; and Vancouver and Toronto will be the host cities in Canada.
Sixty matches including the quarterfinals, semifinals, and finals will take place in the U.S. cities, while ten each will happen in Mexico and Canada.
Stay tuned as we await more updates about FIFA’s plans for the World Cup in the Bay Area!
Featured image: Photo by Fauzan Saari on Unsplash