The US is in a battle with Morocco.
In Donald Trump’s world, it would seem that the governing body of soccer’s World Cup and the warning that came from officials of FIFA to not lobby countries for votes for the 2026 World Cup is the least of his problems. But Trump during a news conference with Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari did what FIFA officials told him not to do last week. Make a pitch for the 2026 World Cup. The United States is joining Mexico and Canada in proposing a three-country host for the 2026 event. Morocco is the other country pushing for the tournament.
In January, Trump upset a good many FIFA voters after it was revealed that Trump, at an immigration meeting, let certain Senate members know what he thought of African countries in a derogatory term. Fifty-five out of FIFA’s 211 voters are African country members. Last week Trump sent out a message to countries that they better support the US-Mexico-Canada bid and he continued lobbying during a joint news conference with the Nigerian President. “I hope all African countries and countries throughout the world, that we also will be supporting you and that they will likewise support us in our bid, along with Canada and Mexico, for the 2026 World Cup. We will be watching very closely, and any help they can give us in that bid we would appreciate.” FIFA has issued a vague statement about the rules of a World Cup bid. The group rules prohibit statements that “may adversely affect the integrity of the bidding process and create an undue influence on the bidding process. We can only refer to the FIFA regulations for the selection of the venue for the final competition of the 2026 FIFA World Cup, and in particular to the bid rules of conduct incorporated therein.” FIFA will award the 2026 World Cup at a ceremony in Moscow, Russia on June 13.