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Cincinnati included in winning 2026 World Cup bid

Cincinnati included in winning 2026 World Cup bid (MGN)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) – The Queen City, a city that took soccer by storm, might host World Cup games.

FIFA, the governing body of world soccer, chose a combined USA-Canada-Mexico bid for the 2026 World Cup.

Cincinnati is one of the cities in the bid.

2026 may be eight years away, but fans are already excited.

As their soccer sons scrimmaged, Kings Hammer versus the Dutch Lions at NKU, soccer dads talked about the World Cup.

There are 23 cities in the winning bid. Up to 16 get games. The others might get practice sites. Fans in Cincinnati want a game.

“I think it would be brilliant. As much as soccer is growing with FC Cincinnati and record crowds, I think it would be great,” said Louay Mishu, whose son plays competitive soccer.

Today’s teenage soccer players were not even alive when the USA last hosted a World Cup in 1994. Some would say that its due time.

“It would just be amazing for the city. The city deserves it. As shown by FC Cincinnati, we have some of the best fans in the country,” said 16-year-old Brevin Andreadis, a member of the Kings Hammer team.

“I think it took a generational shift, with millennials. Cincinnati especially has been big for youth soccer. But now those players have gone on the become parents, and the parent population has become a lot more educated and I think that has impacted the growth of the game,” said Kevin McCloskey, Executive Director at Kings Hammer Soccer Club.

About 20 years ago, you may remember some community leaders launched an effort to bring the Olympics to Cincinnati. While it did lead to some community projects, the general sense was closer to “The Olympics? No way.”

But now? The World Cup in Cincinnati? People aren't laughing now. They're cheering.

“FC Cincinnati has caused an international buzz. People know about us in Europe and South America. I think I would be a natural fit for us here,” said Diego Vallota, whose son plays competitive soccer.


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