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Houston officials to meet with FIFA and U.S. Soccer to discuss 2026 FIFA World Cup bid

Houston 2026 World Cup Bid Committee officials will meet with FIFA and U.S. Soccer representatives tomorrow (Wednesday March 10) to showcase how Houston’s world-class infrastructure, unparalleled hosting expertise and diverse, soccer- loving population will provide the most successful environment for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. Houston is one of 17 U.S. cities bidding to host World Cup matches in 2026. FIFA is expected to select 10 U.S. host cities, with a final decision coming in late 2021. Tomorrow’s virtual meeting will take place at 8:00 a.m. (CST) and is the next major step in the bid process. The meeting will focus on specific items related to the state-of-the-art NRG Stadium, where World Cup matches would be held in Houston.
Houston is not only the fourth largest city in the U.S. but also the largest population city in the U.S. seeking to host the 2026 World Cup within the actual city limits. Having hosted more large-scale sporting events than any other candidate host city since 2004, Houstonians’ spirit for the game is undeniable. Houston’s diverse community of more than seven million people, including business and civic leaders, athletes and fans, is ready and committed to successfully hosting the biggest soccer competition in the world. The Houston delegation includes Houston 2026 World Cup Bid Committee chairman, John Arnold, president, Chris Canetti, and consultant, John Kristick. It also includes Mark Miller, general manager of NRG Park, Ryan Walsh, executive director of the Harris
County Sports & Convention Corp. – NRG Park, David Fletcher, executive director of Lone Star Sports & Entertainment, and Dan Bergstrom, the director of turf & grounds for BBVA Stadium. “We are excited for the opportunity to engage with FIFA and U.S Soccer and discuss Houston’s unmatched operational readiness to host World Cup matches in 2026,” Canetti
said. “We are fortunate to have such a world-class facility as part of our amazing network of infrastructure. NRG Stadium is a key element to the bid, and we are eager to show
how the stadium can seamlessly deliver for FIFA as it has done time-and-time again for other major events.” NRG Stadium is home to the Houston Texans and the Houston Livestock & Rodeo Show. It has hosted two Super Bowls, two NCAA Final Fours. Copa America Centenario, and other major sporting events throughout the years. NRG will host the 2023 Final Four and the 2024 College Football Playoff. It has regularly hosted the Concacaf Gold Cup and matches involving the Mexican National Team. Global super clubs such as Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Manchester City, Manchester United, and Real Madrid have recently played at NRG Stadium.
Canetti will be available for one-on-one virtual interviews upon the conclusion of the meeting via request starting at 10:00 a.m. To request a virtual interview, please email Canetti at

About the Houston 2026 World Cup Bid Committee

The Houston 2026 World Cup Bid Committee is leading our region’s efforts to host the 2026 FIFA World CupTM. It is a subsidiary of the Harris County – Houston Sports Authority. The 2026 FIFA World CupTM will be played in 16 cities across the United States, Mexico, and Canada and Houston is among 17 cities vying to become a U.S. host city. A final decision is expected in 2021.

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