FIFA President Infantino Intends To Encourage Countries Co-Hosting For '26 World Cup
FIFA President Gianni Infantino today said that he "intends to encourage co-hosting" for the '26 World Cup, a move that could "divide the tournament up between as many as four countries," according to Tom Finn of REUTERS. Infantino said, "We need FIFA to show we are reasonable and we have to think about sustainability long-term." Finn notes concern has been "raised about the financial burden placed on a single tournament host, and the bad publicity generated by stadiums built and then abandoned after use." Finn notes the only time FIFA has "previously sanctioned co-hosting" was in '02, when Japan and South Korea "staged a tournament that was widely heralded as a success." The idea has "taken off" at the UEFA European Championship, starting with Belgium and the Netherlands co-hosting in '00 (REUTERS, 2/16).
COMING TO AMERICA? FC Dallas Owner Clark Hunt said he is "very optimistic" that the U.S. will "be in the mix" for hosting the '26 World Cup. Hunt: "You never know how those processes are going to turn out, but I feel like we have a very good chance. ... FIFA understands that it's to their benefit to bring the sport to this country given the wealth of the country and also the strong appetite for the sport here" ("Big Mac Podcast," STAR-TELEGRAM.com, 2/14).