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Philly leaders and fans anxiously awaited in LOVE Park to find out whether Philly would host a 2026 World Cup match. Photo: Nemesis Mora/AL DÍA News.
Philly leaders and fans anxiously awaited in LOVE Park to find out whether Philly would host a 2026 World Cup match. Photo: Nemesis Mora/AL DÍA News.

Philly to host 2026 World Cup match, one of nine U.S. cities

Philadelphians met the announcement with a pep rally at LOVE Park.

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The 2026 tournament comes with a lot of firsts.

It will only be the second time that the U.S has hosted the World Cup, and the third time for Mexico, which hosted in 1970 and 1984.

It will also be the first time a men’s World Cup match has been held in Canada. However, the country did host the Women’s World Cup in 2015.

For the second time since the mid-90s, Philadelphia has also been chosen to host a World Cup match.

Cities that have applied to host games for the 2026 men’s FIFA World Cup and found out on Thursday, June 16 whether their bids were successful.

The 2026 World Cup will also be the first edition to feature 48 teams and the first to be staged in three countries: 10 in the United States, and three each in Canada and Mexico.

It will only be the second time that the U.S has hosted the World Cup, and the third time for Mexico, which hosted in 1970 and 1984.

A total of 24 candidate cities applied to host games including Philadelphia, Miami, Nashville, Dallas, Boston, Guadalajara, Mexico City, Toronto and Vancouver.

In September, a commission from FIFA and U.S. Soccer visited Philly, taking a stop at the Lincoln Financial Field, which would serve as the city’s venue for the games.

"We were able to demonstrate how Philadelphia delivers big events in a really strong and collaborative way. We introduced them to all the people that would be part of the team that would bring this to life," Meg Kane of Philadelphia Soccer 2026 told 6ABC NEWS.

In the past, the Lincoln Financial Field has hosted some of the biggest soccer events, such as the Copa América Centenario, and the Women’s World Cup.

As FIFA announced the 16 host cities, Philadelphia residents refused to sit by patiently and wait.

From 3 to 6 p.m., soccer fans participated in a free big-screen viewing party to watch the live announcement.

The remaining cities chosen were as follows: Atlanta, Dallas, Kansas City, Houston, Monterrey, Mexico City, Boston, Miami, San Francisco, Vancouver, Guadalajara, Toronto, Boston, and Los Angeles.

“Congratulations to Philadelphia for being selected as a host city for the 2026 FIFA Men's World Cup! Looking forward to cheering on @USMNT, especially with all their PA-grown talent,” wrote Sen. Bob Casey on Twitter, using the hashtag #United2026. 

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