Seattle among host cities chosen for 2026 World Cup games

SEATTLE — FIFA, soccer’s international governing body, announced the 2026 World Cup sites on Thursday.

Seattle was selected as one of the American cities to host.

Lumen Field would be the stadium for the matches.

Other cities chosen in the “Western Region” include Vancouver, B.C., San Francisco, Los Angeles and Guadalajara, Mexico.

The “Central Region” cities are Kansas City, Dallas, Atlanta, Houston, Monterrey and Mexico City.

The “Eastern Region” cities are Toronto, Boston, Philadelphia, Miami and New York.

Seattle soccer fans gathered at the George and Dragon Pub in Fremont to hear the announcement, and broke out in a cheer when Seattle’s name was called.

“So deserved, so earned — I’m so excited to show the world what soccer means to the Pacific Northwest,” said soccer fan Conner Mertens.

Beth Knox, president of the Seattle Sports Commission, said we’ll find out in 2023 which matches Seattle will host.

“We know we will have anywhere from three to seven matches, and it is likely to be on the higher side of that,” Knox said.

The Seattle Sports Commission worked with the Seattle Sounders to lead the effort to woo FIFA.

Kelly Sailing of Visit Seattle estimates hosting the World Cup could bring a local economic impact above $100 million.

She said FIFA requires up to 10,500 committed hotel rooms within two hours, and 6,500 rooms are already secured.

The city rolled out the “emerald carpet” when FIFA visited Lumen Field and the Seattle Sounders last November.

The SEA 2026 bid committee will host a community celebration from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Pier 62 on the Seattle waterfront.

The celebration will have limited capacity but will be open to the public.

The 2026 World Cup will be the first to be co-hosted by three countries: the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

FIFA has planned 60 games in the U.S., including all from the quarterfinals on, and 10 each in Mexico and Canada.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.