World Cup 2026 final venue and host city allocations: MetLife Stadium gets FIFA final & opening game at Estadio Azteca

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FIFA has announced the calendar and venues for the 2026 World Cup.

In a live broadcast attended by FIFA President Gianni Infantino, the Azteca Stadium in Mexico was confirmed as the venue for the opening match on 11 June; the same stadium where Diego Maradona lifted the trophy in the 1986 World Cup final with Argentina.

The final will be held at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey on July 19, while the third-place match will be played at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.

The 2026 World Cup will be the first with 48 teams and will be played in three different countries. This format will have 12 groups of four teams each.

2026 FIFA World Cup Fixtures Announced: What Did We Find Out?

The special event was held at the Telemundo Center in Miami, Florida on Sunday, featuring a diverse lineup of guests from Kevin Hart and Kim Kardashian to FIFA President Gianni Infantino and former Brazil captain Cafa.

In an announcement, Fox Sports confirmed: “During Sunday’s special broadcast on FOX and Telemundo, fans will learn the allocation of host cities, the location of the opening games of the tournament in Canada, Mexico and the USA, the group stage location for each host country’s national team. team and the venue for the much-anticipated final match, which is scheduled for Sunday, July 19, 2026.”

Where is the 2026 World Cup?

The 2026 FIFA World Cup will be played in three North American countries: the United States, Canada and Mexico.

Of the tournament’s 80 matches, 60 will be played in the US, 10 in Canada and 10 in Mexico.

The United States and Mexico have previously hosted the men’s World Cup, with Mexico becoming the first country to host three men’s tournaments (1970, 1986 and 2026).

After hosting in 1994, the United States will soon join the list of countries that have hosted multiple men’s World Cups, alongside Mexico, Brazil, Italy, France and Germany.

Canada has hosted the FIFA Women’s World Cup (2015) and the FIFA U-20 Men’s World Cup (2007), so they once again welcomed the world to the occasion of the senior men’s tournament.

Where is the 2026 World Cup Final being held?

Home to the New York Giants and New York Jets, MetLife Stadium is synonymous with the NFL. However, it will play three matches at Copa America 2024, including the semi-finals – something that now serves as a warm-up for hosting the biggest football game on the planet.

AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas was believed to receive the lucrative and historic honor. For months, reports suggested that the home of the Dallas Cowboys beat out rivals MetLife Stadium and SoFi Stadium (Los Angeles, CA) to claim the game’s most visible and important award.

In January 2024, around the time FIFA announced the schedule reveal date, the official X (formerly Twitter) account of the AT&T Stadium reposted the FIFA release with an eye emoji, suggesting that something big might be on the horizon.

Venues for the 2026 World Cup kick-off matches

The opening match of the tournament on Thursday 11 June will be played at Mexico City’s legendary Azteca Stadium, the site of Pelé’s 1970 triumph with Brazil and Diego Maradona inspiring Argentina to glory in 1986.

Co-hosts Mexico will play against group opponents to be determined in the draw for the tournament. It will be one of three group games at the Azteca, with Estadio BBVA in Monterrey (three) and Estadio Akron in Guadalajara (four) rounding out Mexico’s allocation for all rounds.

Mexico City will also play a last 16 match.

FIFA World Cup 2026 host cities, match schedule

The specific venues and cities where the matches will be held were announced by FIFA on 16 June 2022 at an event held in New York and broadcast live around the world. A total of 16 venues were selected by FIFA among the 23 cities selected under the “United Bid”, which aimed to host the 2026 World Cup matches.

Host sites will be spread across three countries, with 11 sites in the United States, three in Mexico and two in Canada.

Two of the stadiums, the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City and the Rose Bowl in Los Angeles, have previously hosted World Cup finals.

Currently, the Estadio Azteca remains one of only two venues in the world to have hosted two men’s World Cup finals alongside Brazil’s Maracana.

Confirmed venues to host 2026 World Cup matches

Market State Country Venue Capacity No. of matches
Mexico City Mexico Estadio Azteca 87,523 5
New York City NY/NJ USA MetLife Stadium 82,500 8
Dallas TX USA AT&T Stadium 80,000 9
Kansas City KS USA Arrowhead Stadium 76,416 6
Houston TX USA NRG Stadium 71,795 7
Atlanta GA USA Mercedes-Benz Stadium 71,000 8
Los Angeles CA USA SoFi Stadium 70,240 8
Philadelphia PA USA Lincoln Financial Field 69,176 6
Seattle WA USA Lumen Field 69,000 6
San Francisco CA USA Levi’s Stadium 68,500 6
Boston MA USA Gillette Stadium 65,878 7
Miami FL USA Hard Rock Stadium 64,767 7
Vancouver BC Canada BC Place 54,000 7
Monterrey NL Mexico Estadio BBVA 53,500 4
Guadalajara JAL Mexico Estadio Akron 46,232 4
Toronto ON Canada BMO Field 45,500* 6

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