FIFA says it plans on choosing the host country for the 2026 World Cup in May 2017, FIFA announced.
The bidding process will start later this year with the decision being made by FIFA’s member federations at the annual congress in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
The Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) wants priority because it has not hosted the World Cup since the United States staged the tournament in 1994. The U.S., Canada and Mexico will likely place bids on the 2026 World Cup, with the U.S. also bidding on the 2024 Summer Olympics.
European and Asian countries will probably be shut out from hosting because of FIFA rules.
Under FIFA’s current rotation rules, a confederation can’t bid for the next two tournaments after it has hosted a World Cup. Russia is hosting the 2018 World Cup and the 2022 World Cup will be played in Qatar, which FIFA confirmed Thursday would be held in November-December.
FIFA president Sepp Blatter said last year that the United States could host the 2026 World Cup.
"If you look at the rotation of the World Cup then it should go back to Africa or go to the Americas," Blatter said. "And as we have been in South America, I think North America has a better chance than South America–if I'm looking on the, let's say, the logic of the turnaround of the World Cup."
CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb has been outspoken in his quest to land the World Cup in the region, telling SI's Grant Wahl that, "The U.S. has the best infrastructure, not only the best in CONCACAF, but the best for any sport in the world. I believe the U.S. could host a World Cup in a year’s time just based on organization without having to build any stadiums."
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