The Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) have appointed Argentine referee Nestor Pitana to officiate the opening game of this year's FIFA World Cup between hosts Russia and Saudi Arabia on Thursday in Moscow. The U.S. proposed to host 60 out of the 80 matches, leaving Canada and Mexico with 10 fixtures each.
Either North America or Morocco will earn the right to host the 2026 World Cup when the vote is conducted at the FIFA Congress in Moscow.
Historically, the host nation has always automatically qualified for the World Cup - it hasn't been forced to play games in order to qualify for the tournament.
The tournament will mark the first time a World Cup has been shared by three host nations. Canada has never hosted a men's World Cup but held the women's tournament in 2015. With a handful of games in Mexico and Canada but the majority in the US, the 2026 bid promises the richest and most lucrative tournament in the history of global soccer.
Sixty matches will take place in the United States, while Canada and Mexico will host 10 games each. All soccer venues are expected to be ready by the time the 2026 World Cup rolls around. The United States staged the tournament in 1994. The Trophy Tour has been a great platform to get the entire world and the host country excited for the 2018 FIFA World Cup that kicks off in less than one week.
"Thank you so, so much for this incredible honour".
The 82-year-old's attendance at the World Cup could put him in close proximity to his successor, Gianni Infantino, who has sought to draw a line under past scandals.
CONCACAF, whose president - Canadian Victor Montagliani - played a key role in the bid, called the vote a "monumental victory" for the confederation that covers North and Central America and the Caribbean.
Edmontonian Alphonso Davies, 17, was the first to speak in the United Bid's final presentation to the FIFA Congress prior to the vote. Those cities won't be announced until 2020, but Kansas City could be one of them.
Vancouver will watch from the sidelines after the B.C. government, citing concerns over the possible costs of being a host city, was unable to come to terms with the bid committee. The 2022 FIFA World Cup will take place in Qatar.