The International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) announced that New York and New Jersey have been selected as hosts for the 2026 FIFA World Cup following the cities' joint bid for the job. Specifically, the sport's stars will play games inside MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford. How exciting!
"The biggest sporting event in the world is coming to the biggest stage, and New York City cannot wait to welcome the world to our region," said Mayor Eric Adams in an official statement about the news. "Not only will the World Cup strengthen our economy by providing a major boost but it will showcase FIFA and the sport of soccer to all of America."
Phil Murphy, the governor of New Jersey, also released a celebratory statement. "Future generations of New Jerseyans will remember fondly that, on the heels of a global pandemic, the biggest sporting event in the world was hosted by the greatest region in the world," he said. "in addition to building upon our lasting global legacy, as a host region we will also benefit from significant economic activity and impact, as well as opportunities to showcase the rich cultural diversity of our state."
MetLife Stadium happens to be suited to the task, on average hosting two million audience members annually. The New York/New Jersey region is also home to five different airports that service flights from over 180 countries.
City dwellers can also expect the two towns to host FIFA Fan Fest sites all over the region while proposed training facilities include Rutgers University, The Pingry School, Kean University, Red Bull Football Club Training Facility, and the New York City Football Club Training Facility.
Although this isn't the first time that the World Cup is played on U.S. territory (in 1994, Giant Stadium hosted seven games in the men's league and, in 1999, it welcomed the opening match of the women's league), this is clearly big news coming out of a devastating pandemic.
Other U.S. cities and NFL stadiums are scheduled to host games in the 2026 tournament. They are:
Atlanta, Georgia - Mercedes-Benz Stadium
Houston, Texas - NRG Stadium
Miami, Florida - Hard Rock Stadium
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - Lincoln Financial Field
Seattle, Washington - Lumen Field
Kansas City, Missouri - Arrowhead Stadium
Arlington, Texas - AT&T Stadium
Foxborough, Massachusetts - Gillette Stadium
Inglewood, California - SoFi Stadium
Santa Clara, California - Levi Stadium
Marking the exciting update, iconic landmarks and stadiums across all NYC boroughs and the State of New Jersey were lit up with messages of celebrations this past weekend.
We know there's still a long way to go, but mark your calendars: the 23rd FIFA World Cup is set to kick off on June 8, 2026.