Local leaders react to North America’s winning bid for 2026 World Cup

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The outcome had appeared inevitable; the feasibility report carried out on each bid saw the joint offer given a score of 402.8 out of 500, while Morocco received a mark of only 274.9.

The 2026 award is also a victory for many of FIFA's corporate partners, which will have the advantage of more teams and the world's biggest media market.

Potential commercial opportunities, practical legal hurdles involved with throwing a huge event in three separate, large countries and a litany of other questions must be answered in the buildup to the 2026 tournament, which will be the first World Cup to feature an expanded field of 48 teams. In the expanded competition, the Concacaf region, which represents North and Central America and the Caribbean, would still receive three additional slots, decided through the qualifying process, plus one team in an global playoff. The top two teams from each group will advance to a 32-team, tournament style knockout round.

Morocco has made five unsuccessful bids to host the World Cup.

Canada and Mexico have already named its three host cities.

The new format will increase the amount of games at the tournament from 64 to 80. The USA are set to host 60, while Canada and Mexico will have just 10 each.

"It just made a lot of sense to accommodate and expand a tournament have all three countries host and really kind of spread the football love all around North America", Shanks added.

The U.S. last hosted the World Cup in 1994, an event that eventually gave rise to Major League Soccer, now in its 23rd season. An impressive 3.6m attended across the 52 matches, a figure that still stands.

A total of 23 finalists between the three countries have been selected as possible locations for World Cup games. Morocco did not have a single one. Mexico and the United States have each appeared in seven of the past eight World Cups. Mercedes-Benz Stadium is a proposed semifinal site, as is AT&T Stadium outside of Dallas.

Three countries have never shared the duties before.

Shanks is gearing up for this year's tournament in Moscow, which will be broadcast in the U.S.by Fox Sports, and will take place in 11 cities across Russian Federation. Federation Internationale de Football Association will select up to 16 cities for matches. Trump threatened those who did not back the bid via Twitter - but he tweeted his delight at the outcome.

Trump, who as part of a tougher US immigration policy has called for a wall to be built on the country's southern border and paid for by Mexico, just days ago personally insulted Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau over a trade dispute. But even if he secures a second term, he will not be in office by 2026. Where, exactly, the World Cup will be played, and whether all three host nations will automatically qualify for the tournament.

That suggests that North American bid leaders' promises to deliver a record $11 billion profit for the 2026 tournament are feasible.

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