U.S., Mexico withdraw ’27 WWC bid, look to ’31

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U.S. Soccer and the Mexican Football Federation have withdrawn their bid to jointly host the 2027 Women’s World Cup and will instead focus on securing the 2031 Women’s World Cup, the federations announced on Monday.

The U.S.-Mexico joint bid was one of three finalists for the 2027 World Cup alongside Brazil and a joint bid from Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands, with the FIFA Congress set to vote on the 2027 host on May 17 in Bangkok, Thailand.

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The hosts of the 2031 Women’s World Cup are expected to be decided next year, although formal bidding is yet to begin. Mexico and the U.S. are already co-hosting the 2026 men’s World Cup alongside Canada.

That tournament will be the largest in history with 48 teams. Los Angeles will then host the 2028 Summer Olympics, meaning the 2027 Women’s World Cup would have had to compete for sponsorship dollars and other resources in between.

“Hosting a World Cup tournament is a huge undertaking — and having additional time to prepare allows us to maximize its impact across the globe,” U.S. Soccer president Cindy Parlow Cone said in a statement. “I’m proud of our commitment to provide equitable experiences for the players, fans and all our stakeholders. Shifting our bid will enable us to host a record-breaking Women’s World Cup in 2031 that will help to grow and raise the level of the women’s game both here at home as well as across the globe.”  

The U.S.-Mexico joint bid for 2027 took a strong commercial positioning in its bid book, claiming that the tournament would be in the unique position to sell out high-capacity stadiums and break attendance records — forecasting 4.5 million fans and $3 billion in total revenue.

The bid also called for equal investment to the men’s tournament.

FIFA said last year it planned to spend $896 million in prize money for the 2026 World Cup in the U.S., Mexico and Canada. The governing body devoted $110 million in prize money for last year’s Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

“The strength and universality of our professional women’s leagues, coupled with our experience from organizing the 2026 World Cup, means that we will be able to provide the best infrastructure as well as an enthusiastic fan base that will make all the participating teams feel at home and to put together a World Cup that will contribute to the continued growth of women’s football,” Ivar Sisniega, president of the Mexican Football Federation, said in a statement.

The U.S. previously hosted the Women’s World Cup in 1999 and 2003. The Americans famously won the 1999 event, while the 2003 edition — where they finished third — was moved to the U.S. on short notice because of the SARS outbreak in China, the original host for the tournament.

Brazil would become the first South American country to host a Women’s World Cup if successful in its bid.

Germany, part of the European joint bid, previously hosted the Women’s World Cup in 2011. Both countries also hosted men’s World Cups within the past 20 years.

This post was originally published on ESPN

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