(United Bid Committee image)

The United Bid of Canada, Mexico and the U.S. will be going up against Morocco for the opportunity to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup after FIFA announced yesterday that the African country has officially submitted their intention to participate in process.

“Canada will continue to collaborate with our partners in Mexico and the United States to put forth a world class bid that will demonstrate to FIFA that the United Bid of Canada, Mexico and the United States is the right choice to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup,” said Steven Reed, president, Canada Soccer.

All bidders must now submit their proposal for consideration by FIFA by the deadline of March 16, 2018. A decision on whether to select one of the bidders will be taken at the FIFA Congress to be convened next June.

Canada, Mexico and the United States have hosted a combined 13 FIFA World Cups (men, women and youth), more than any other trio of geographically-connected nations, and set attendance records for five of those events. The 2026 FIFA World Cup will be the first with the expanded 48-team format, requiring facilities and infrastructure that these countries are uniquely suited to fulfill.

The United Bid Committee kicked off its efforts in July by announcing the board of directors and the executive leadership team that includes executive director John Kristick, managing director of technical operations Jim Brown, Canada Bid Director Peter Montopoli, who is the Canada Soccer general secretary, and Mexico Bid Director Yon De Luisa, who is a Televisa vice president.

The United Bid Committee’s board of directors includes Sunil Gulati (chairman), Steven Reed (Canada), Peter Montopoli (Canada), Decio De Maria (Mexico), Guillermo Cantu (Mexico), Carlos Cordeiro (USA), Donna Shalala (USA), Dan Flynn (USA), Don Garber (USA), Carlos Bocanegra (USA), Julie Foudy (USA), Ed Foster-Simeon (USA) and Victor Montagliani (CONCACAF). Legendary sports executive Robert Kraft has been appointed as honourary chairman of the board.

– Canada Soccer