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Morocco Will Complete 2026 World Cup Infrastructure Projects Despite Defeat

Morocco Will Complete 2026 World Cup Infrastructure Projects Despite Defeat

The 2026 World Cup will have 48 teams playing a total of 80 games - 60 are planned in the USA and 10 each in Canada and Mexico.

"Thank you for entrusting us with the privilege of hosting the Fifa World Cup in 2026", said an emotional Carlos Cordeiro, the president of the United States soccer federation, on the eve of this summer's tournament in Russia.

"I was sad when the victor was announced", said former Moroccan footballer Abdelkrim El Hadrioui.

The US hosted the World Cup previously in 1994 while Mexico hosted it in 1970 and 1986.

The specific dates will be set by FIFA in the future, including the date for the FIFA World Cup Official Draw which usually takes place the December before the tournament (in this case December 2025).

Despite the defeat, bid chairman Moulay Hafid Elalamy said in a statement, "Morocco is proud to have led a campaign that was committed, ethical and totally in keeping to the rules imposed by Federation Internationale de Football Association".

In a final pitch for support before Federation Internationale de Football Association delegates, the Moroccan bid had promoted the country's passion for the game, the short distances between venues and - in a barb against USA crime levels - its restrictions on gun ownership.




But bid chief Hicham el Amrani said he was confident the country's infrastructure "could deliver" and made play of the North African nation's position, nine miles from the southern tip of Spain - dubbing it a "European" World Cup.

North America received backing from former Manchester United and LA Galaxy midfielder David Beckham as he believes the "fans passion for football would make the event very special".

The 2018 World Cup opening match and final will be played in Moscow at the Luzhniki stadium. The White House provided U.S. Soccer president Carlos Cordeiro with three separate letters that Cordeiro showed to delegates, containing guarantees from Trump that any immigration policies relating to predominantly Muslim countries would impose no restriction affecting the tournament.

However, Nigeria's relationship with Morocco has improved over the years leading to a first presidential visit by a Nigerian leader to the North African country.

Hosting a World Cup is a spectacle unlike any other, and in two cycles, the world's biggest competition will return to North America following Wednesday's vote.

The United States will host 60 of the 80 games, including all of those in the latter stages, with Mexico and Canada each hosting ten. He said it was too early to put a price tag on the upgrades.

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