Governor Phil Murphy (R) and New York City Mayor Eric Adams (back-left) celebrate with local kids after FIFA announced the World Cup is coming to the Tri-State area. Photo: NJ Office of the Governor.

They waited patiently as 15 other cities across North America were called. Then finally with the 16th city, New York City/New Jersey was chosen as a host for the World Cup in 2026.  The incredible moment completed years of hard work –that dated back to 2018 by the World Cup committee to bring the games to various sites across the United States, Canada and Mexico.

Officials in the New York City/New Jersey area worked equally hard to make their pitch, and, even through a global pandemic as Governor Murphy reiterated, the belief is the World Cup will be a boon to the area. According to, there is a belief it could bring in an estimated $500 million in economic benefits to the area.

“They had us sweating there and we were the last one’s to bat,” Murphy said. “In as much as we want the early games, we want the last game. We want the last game. We want that World Cup trophy hoisted here at MetLife Stadium. Look at the backdrop! How could you not play the finals here? Look at New York City. The statue of liberty. Ellis Island. It screams diversity! It screams immigrant routes! It screams Soccer!”

Added Mayor Adams, “This is what it’s all about. And all of us, who have weighed down by COVID. All of us who experienced uncertainty. Today these young people and their enthusiasm turned a question mark and turned it an exclamation point. We are America! We are New York and New Jersey! We are going to be alright! Soccer has a way of bridging us all together!”

The Men’s World Cup was last played in the United States in 1994 with seven games taking place at old Giants Stadium, including a classic match between Italy and Ireland. The Women’s World Cup played in the Meadowlands in 1999.

This year’s World Cup takes place in late November in Qartar.