Mexico, the United States, and Canada are putting together a kind of North American package deal for a World Cup bid that would see them as three host nations in 2026, multiple sources told ESPN FC today. The reports follow on the heels of U.S. soccer declaring today that an "historic announcement" would be made on Monday. If the three nations do put together a bid, it would be the most countries that have ever hosted the World Cup.
In some ways, the joint venture marks for a bit of a surprise, as the United States alone have been seen as the clear frontrunners for the bid ever since U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch took on FIFA's densely corrupt practices, exposing a bribery scandal revolving around the 2020 Qatar bid that beat out the U.S. But with the announcement last month that the tournament would expand to an extremely large 48 teams, it seems that officials thought to seek a bid that could handle even more bandwidth.
The statement about Monday's announcement was sent out while CONCACAF officials met in Aruba on Saturday, after confederation president Victor Montagliani said that the three countries were seeking to make a bid that would "rise above politics." (Insert mention of Trump's border wall here.) The only other World Cup to be hosted by more than one country was in 2002 between Japan and South Korea—considerably smaller countries. The triple-country bid could either prove to be a safe bet for handling all 48 teams, or set an oversized precedent for World Cups to come.
The tentative date for FIFA confirming host bid rules for 2026 is set for May 11 in Bahrain. The hosts will be named in May 2020.