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Seattle officially part of 2026 World Cup Bid Book

List of cities would still need to be pared down if bid is successful.

Gallery Photo: Sounders v Columbus: Photos Mike Russell / Sounder at Heart

There’s still quite a bit of work to do before games are actually played, but Seattle is one big step closer to hosting games if — and that’s an increasingly big “if” — the United States, Canada and Mexico win the right to host the 2026 World Cup. The so-called “United” Bid Book includes 23 cities — 17 of which are in the United States — and FIFA would then select up to 16 of them to actually host games.

The 2026 World Cup will be the first one to include an expanded field of 48 teams and the United States will host the same number of games it would have in a 32-team tournament.

The United Bid has long been considered the odds-on favorite to be selected, but Morocco has recently come on strong and even won an endorsement from former FIFA president Sepp Blatter.

One thing seemingly working in the United Bid’s favor is that it wouldn’t require any new facilities to be built as every city features a stadium that is already capable of hosting games.

If Seattle were to be selected, it would likely host two to four matches and require natural grass to be installed at CenturyLink Field.

Among the notable omissions from the bid were Vancouver and Chicago, where local governments reportedly balked at some of FIFA’s more outlandish demands.

List of cities

Canada: Edmonton, Montréal, Toronto

Mexico: Guadalajara, Mexico City, Monterrey

United States: Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York/New Jersey, Orlando, Philadelphia, San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, Washington DC.

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