The U.S., Mexico, and Canada announced details Monday of their joint bid to host the 2026 World Cup soccer tournament.
The proposal calls for 60 of the 80 World Cup games to take place in the USA, while Mexico and Canada would get only 10 each.
The Concacaf president, Victor Montagliani, told the Guardian last week that a joint bid would be "a fit" with the new 48-country, 80-game format for the 2026 tournament, although each country individually would have the infrastructure to host the World Cup alone.
That sense of certainty hardened a year ago, when FIFA's council ruled that neither Europe nor Asia would be eligible to run for the 2026 tournament on the grounds that the regions are hosting the next two World Cups.
Soccer officials from each country made the announcement with much fanfare from the observatory of One World Trade Center, which offered a clear view of the city under sunny skies on Monday.
To go forward with this bid, the USA needed to solicit support from President Donald Trump, whose controversial comments about Mexico and his plans to construct a border wall have raised tensions between the countries.
Montreal's Olympic Stadium (56,000), built for the 1976 Games, and Toronto's Rogers Centre (53,000) are less ideal for soccer in their current states.
"The US, Mexico and Canada have individually demonstrated their exceptional abilities to host world-class events", added Gulati.
"It's up to us to put on the World Cup because we have a duty to the fans and I think the World Cup - no pun intended - needs to trump politics", he said.
It looks like the US and CONCACAF know it. It later confirmed that the previous two World Cup hosts, Europe and Asia, will not be eligible to bid. Mexico has hosted the World Cup in 1970 and 1986. The United States hosted the 1994 tournament, and the Rose Bowl was the site of the final. In that year, South Korea and Japan hosted the World Cup. Yet doubts remain over what impact United States president Donald Trump and the policies of his administration might have on the joint proposal.
The CONCACAF region is widely viewed as favourite to win the 2026 bid, given Federation Internationale de Football Association rules that restrict Europe and Asia from hosting again so quickly.
In some ways, the growth of soccer in Canada hinges on the success of the mega-bid, which will be voted on by or before 2020.
"He is fully supportive of the joint bid, encouraged the joint bid, and is especially pleased with the fact Mexico is participating in the joint bid". And the US will host every match from the quarterfinals on, meaning the final will be held somewhere in America. By teaming up, Canada, Mexico, and the United States will only need to compete with CAF bids from countries in Africa, CONMEBOL bids from countries in South America, and OFC bids from countries in Oceania.
Sunil Gulati, President of the United States Soccer Federation has said in a presser that there is strong encouragement from Donald Trump and hence there are no concerns.
Host nations have always been given an automatic berth at the World Cup.