FIFA World Cup 2026 schedule revealed, Mexico set to host tournament opener

FIFA World Cup 2026 schedule revealed, Mexico set to host tournament opener
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Zurich, Switzerland: The schedule for FIFA World Cup 2026 to be hosted jointly by USA, Canada and Mexico was revealed, with the historic Estadio Azteca stadium in Mexico City set to host the tournament opener featuring the home team.

The final of the highly-anticipated tournament will take place on July 19, 2026 at New York, New Jersey.

The biggest edition of the marquee football event will witness 104 matches being played across 16 host cities in the aforementioned three countries, involving a total of 48 teams, as per FIFA's official website.

The teams have been expanded from 32 to 48. The other two host nations will be kicking off their campaigns on July 12, with Canada playing their first game in Toronto and the USA starting off their World Cup journey in Los Angeles.

The moment 83,000-seat Estadio Azteca gets filled with die-hard fans and some of the best players in the world, it will mark the third time after 1970 and 1986 that Mexican soil will host the World Cup.

Canada will get to host the FIFA World Cup for the first time ever, having earlier hosted FIFA's women's and youth-level tournaments, including the 2015 Women's World Cup. The USA will be hosting the tournament for the second time since 1994.

Miami will get to host the third-place deciding match-up, with Dallas and Atlanta getting the semifinal match hosting rights. Dallas will get to host nine matches overall, the most by any city in the tournament.

Canada, Mexico and the USA are guaranteed to play three group-stage matches on home soil. Keeping in mind the demands of modern-day football with regards to relaxation, rest, fitness and recovery, three days of test for the teams will be observed for 103 out of 104 matches.

The first matchday of the tournament will feature two matches, the first one in Mexico City and the other in Guadalajara.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino said in a statement: "The most inclusive and impactful FIFA World Cup ever is no longer a dream but a reality that will take shape in the form of 104 matches in 16 state-of-the-art stadiums across Canada, Mexico and the USA. From the opening match at the iconic Estadio Azteca to the spectacular final in New York New Jersey players and fans have been at the core of our extensive planning for this game-changing tournament."

"I would like to thank our three host countries and 16 Host Cities for the unwavering commitment to staging a FIFA World Cup that will not only set new records but also leave an indelible legacy."

FIFA Vice-President and Concacaf President Victor Montagliani said: "The FIFA World Cup 26 will be a watershed moment and one that will trigger massive football development in our region and worldwide. While each Host City is unique, they all have something in common - they are passionate about football and cannot wait to welcome the world in June and July 2026."