Asked at a press conference on Monday whether Vancouver could return to the photo, Colin Smith said that FIFA is focusing on the three original Canadian candidate cities.
“These are the three cities that apply, so these are the three cities that we assess and discuss with,” said Smith, FIFA tournament and events manager.
Smith said the same thing when asked if Chicago could be added to the 17 US cities under study.
“We have 17 fantastic cities and there is great depth across the United States and we are looking forward to selecting these 17 cities,” he said.
The British Columbia government said in March 2018 that it was unwilling to make Vancouver a host city due to cost concerns. British Columbia Premier John Horgan reiterated his position three months later, saying his government was unwilling to “write a blank check.”
BC Place Stadium in Vancouver was a major feature of the 2015 Women’s World Cup, hosting nine games, including the final.
Chicago withdrew from the 2026 candidate city in March 2018, saying that FIFA had been unable to provide the necessary assurances.
Canada, Mexico and the United States have been selected from Morocco to host the 2026 tournament on June 13, 2018 by the 68th FIFA Congress in Moscow.
Les villes américaines candidates sont Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Cincinnati, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, New York / New Jersey, Orlando, Philadelphie, San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle et Washington, DC
The candidate cities of Mexico are Guadalajara, Mexico City and Monterrey.
The 2026 tournament was extended to 48 teams, up from 32, with 80 games in total. The organizing committee’s blueprint is that Canada and Mexico will host 10 games each, with the United States hosting 60 games, including all games starting in the quarterfinals.
FIFA is seeking to select “up to 16” candidate cities from the list of 23 submitted by the North American joint bid. The bid group worked in three cities in Canada and Mexico and 10 in the United States. Canadian officials say they will push to keep their three host cities.
It is the first time that three countries have been selected to host the World Cup and the first time that the tournament has been held in North America in 32 years.
Smith is hosting a virtual workshop on Tuesday with representatives from the US candidate cities.
His FIFA delegation met with Canada Soccer and representatives from the three Canadian candidate cities in Toronto on March 12, when many sports leagues stopped because of the global pandemic.
The FIFA delegation had met representatives of the three Mexican candidate cities before that. The US portion of the trip has been postponed due to travel restrictions related to COVID 19 which were designed to prevent certain candidate cities from attending.
The workshops will be followed by site visits to the three countries, although their schedule remains uncertain due to COVID-19.
Smith said the initial plan was to finalize the host city selection process in the spring of 2021. This was pushed back by the pandemic and Smith said the timing of the final announcement of the host city will only be known more late in the year.