photo by ISIphotos.com
By FRANCO PANIZO
Having seen the United States lose out on hosting the 2022 World Cup, CONCACAF has set its sights on landing the 2026 edition of the tournament.
CONCACAF president Jeffrey Webb told reporters Tuesday that he believes it is only fair that a nation from his region is given the 2026 World Cup after missing out on a chance to host the upcoming tournaments in 2018 and 2022 because of FIFA’s decision to do away with its rotational policy. The next two World Cups will be played in Russia and Qatar, which means CONCACAF’s wait to host another tournament will be at least 32 years.
“From a CONCACAF perspective, our focus for the World Cup is 2026. We’re committed to that,” said Webb. “That’s not about the USA hosting the World Cup. For us it’s about a confederation standpoint.
“CONCACAF was obviously hard done (by) when (the) rotation stopped, we were the ones who lost out because it should have been our turn after Brazil. When the rotation stopped, obviously it impacted us the most.”
While FIFA got rid of its rotation, it created a new rule that that prevents countries from hosting World Cups if another nation from within their confederation had staged any of the previous two. That leaves CONCACAF, CONMEBOL, CAF and Oceania as the confederations eligible to host the 2026 edition.
The United States, which hosted the last CONCACAF-based World Cup in 1994, has previously expressed an interest in landing the 2026 edition. Mexico and Canada have, however, also said they are keen on trying to host it.
Webb believes the chances of CONCACAF winning a World Cup bid will increase if a single nation is in the running.
“Obviously we believe our best chances is to put one member forward, one country forward, one bid forward. That gives us our best opportunity,” said Webb. “CONCACAF has 35 votes and of course if you split those votes amongst ourselves you’re defeating the purpose.”
Even so, Webb did not say that a joint venture – where two nations co-host the tournament – was out of the question.
“I think it is very much possible,” said Webb.
What do you think of CONCACAF trying to land the 2026 World Cup? Think its chances of doing so are good? Would you mind seeing the U.S. co-host it with one of Canada or Mexico?
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