Feb 4, 2024 - Sports

New York-New Jersey to host 2026 World Cup final

Illustration of a soccer ball broken up into small pieces and rearranged

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

New York-New Jersey will host the final match of the 2026 Men's World Cup.

Why it matters: The international soccer tournament is the world's most widely viewed sporting event, and matches can deliver a super-sized economic jolt to the host cities, officials say.

Driving the news: FIFA, the international governing body of soccer, shared the tournament's schedule Sunday during a livestream that included their officials and celebrities representing the three North American host countries.

Details: The first game will be played in Mexico City's famed Estadio Azteca on June 11.

  • Los Angeles will host the 39-day tournament's opening game in the United States.

Of note: Dallas' AT&T Stadium will host a total of nine matches, including a semifinal, the most of any U.S. city.

  • Atlanta's Mercedes-Benz Stadium will host eight, one of which includes a semifinal.

What they're saying: "This whole calendar has been designed to make sure that the fans can travel with the teams in a way that's not too burdensome," FIFA president Gianni Infantino said during the announcement.

  • Gregg Berhalter, the U.S. men's national team head coach, said he hopes the tournament will fuel support for the team as they compete in their home country.
  • "It's gonna be big. It's not just going to be about the communities hosting the World Cup, it's going to be all the communities in the U.S. getting behind us," Berhalter said.

Of note: In June 2022, FIFA named 16 cities in the United States, Canada and Mexico to host matches, marking the first time in more than 20 years that the tournament will be played in more than one country.

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