Words From Blatter Support Canadian World Cup Dream

Before the opening of the U-20 Women’s World Cup, Sepp Blatter supports the idea of a Canada hosting the men’s World Cup
by Henrik Lonne   |   Friday, August 08, 2014

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After Russia and Qatar were awarded the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, a consensus among many arose that you can only host the World Cup with help of brown envelopes with unmarked dollar bills. While no one knows what happens behind closed doors, it seems though the Canadian Soccer Association is trying another strategy – and seemingly with success.

Not all tournaments are able to attract fans to the stadiums, get TV coverage and obtain sponsorships, which means some are even loss making. They still need to be held and stepping forward to host the financially less attractive tournaments should give that association a great name and a lot of goodwill within FIFA.

If you haven’t noticed Canada is not just hosting the U-20 Women’s World Cup this year, but will also host the full tournament next year. Furthermore, Canada has also hosted the U-20 Men’s World Cup in 2007.

These things help and FIFA President Sepp Blatter also praised Canada and the CSA for hosting the Women’s World Cup.

“You (Canada) had the courage to take on the challenge of hosting a 24-team Women’s World Cup for the first time and I am convinced that you will do a good job and the local people will respond positively.”

It is that kind of courage Blatter also sees necessary to host the men’s tournament.

“It’s a project and if you’re going to have a project like the FIFA World Cup, it takes some time. You have had the courage and it was necessary (for CSA president Victor Montagliani) to have the courage to ask, to organize FIFA’s Women’s World Cup with 24 teams. It will be the first time.”

So far Canada is the only country to have bid for the 2026 World Cup and competition may not be as fierce as early. The high infrastructure costs often associated with hosting such a tournament is causing more and more countries to drop their bids for large sporting events.

With Canada stating its intent early and working the machine to get the goodwill needed to win the bid, the Great White North might end up the host of the 2026 Men’s World Cup.

Henrik LONNE

Copenhagen Business School
Club Domestic:
AGF Aarhus
Club Foreign:
Toronto FC
Born and raised in Denmark, the US performance in the 2002 World Cup dragged Henrik into the world of North American soccer. Subsequent trips to Canada made him a Toronto FC fan from abroad. The passion he now has for MLS outshines most European leagues.