Well, there you have it Canada. Toronto is not actually the centre of the universe.
We finally have confirmation on how many games each Canadian World Cup host city will get when play kicks off in the summer of 2026, and to the disappointment of Canadians who may have hoped the expansion of the tournament would mean many more games in Canada, FIFA stuck to the original plan awarding just 10 of the 72 total group-stage matches north of the 49th parallel.
Toronto and Vancouver were each awarded five group stage matches to be played at Toronto’s BMO Field and Vancouver’s BC Place.
The pleasant surprise on Sunday was the revelation that Canada will additionally host three knockout stage games, with a round-of-32 match in both Toronto and Vancouver and a last-16 match to be played at BC Place.
The Canadian men’s national team will play their opening group stage match at BMO Field on June 12 and then move camp to Vancouver for their matchday two fixture on June 18, followed by CanMNT’s final group game on June 24 at BC Place.
Of course, Vancouver getting one more match than Toronto brought out some cross-sport chirps on Twitter. And even if you’re an offended Toronto Maple Leafs fan, it’s hard not to respect how clever and quick (and accurate) this shot is.
FIFA unveiled the full 2026 World Cup schedule with all the pomp and circumstance you’ve grown to expect from Infantino’s operation. Although, few people would’ve predicted that Kevin Hart would open the broadcast as host alongside Jenny Taft and Spanish-speaking play-by-play legend Andres Cantor. Why Infantino chose to dress like a Gen Z rapper is beyond me, but that was the least important revelation on Sunday.
To the surprise of anyone in Dallas that bought into the speculation that the Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium would host the 2026 FIFA World Cup final, New York/New Jersey’s MetLife Stadium was awarded the big showcase on July 19.
Los Angeles will host the opening game in the United States at SoFi Stadium, home of the NFL’s LA Rams and Chargers. The first revelation on the broadcast was that Mexico City’s famed Estadio Azteca will host the opening match on June 11, 2026.
The third place match will take place in Miami — which hosted Sunday’s FIFA broadcast — while the highly semi-finals will be held in Dallas and Atlanta. While they weren’t awarded the final, Dallas’ 100-thousand seat stadium will host nine matches in total, more than any host city.
SoFi in LA will also host one quarter-final, while the other three will be played in at Gillette Stadium in Boston, Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, and Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.
Teams will have three days of well-deserved rest, except for a single match out of the entire 104. The majority of games will be strategically played within three regionalized zones – east, central, and west.
Initially when the North American bid was awarded in 2018, Canada was slated to host 10 matches. But FIFA has since expanded the tournament schedule amid public criticism, choosing to adopt traditional groups of four teams rather than three. Doing so increased the total amount of matches to 104. Previous 32-team World Cups featured 64 games. Sadly though, that meant just three more matches for Canada.
While the three CONCACAF hosts hold automatic berths to the tournament, this World Cup is really one big American event, with just two host cities in Canada, three in Mexico, and the remainder in big NFL markets; Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, New York/New Jersey, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Seattle.
The 2026 FIFA World Cup kicks off in just 855 days.