2026 WORLD CUP FOOTBALL

FIFA™ | United States of America, Canada & Mexico

2026 World Cup | Final Round

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The schedule of the 23rd final round of the World Cup soccer in the United States, Canada, and Mexico consists of the group stage, round of 32, round of 16, quarterfinals, semifinals, third-place playoffs, and final. In the first round, the group stage, the 48 qualifying countries will be divided into twelve groups of four teams each. In each group, each country will play three round-robin matches against the three other countries in that group. The two top-scoring countries from each group will advance to the knockout stage, as well as the eight best group numbers three. In this stage, the men’s global final soccer tournament will proceed in accordance with the usual, well-known system of knockouts. From the round of 32 onwards, only the winner will advance in single-elimination matches, with or without an extension and penalties.

The schedule for the 2026 World Cup already shows that the opening match will be held on Sunday, May 31, 2026, either in Los Angeles in the Rose Bowl stadium – update June 16, 2022: the Rose Bowl is not one of the final host cities – or in Mexico City in the Azteca Stadium. The combined BID United from the host countries, the USA, Canada, and Mexico, has also proposed Atlanta (Mercedes-Benz Stadium) and Dallas (AT&T Stadium) as the backdrop for the semifinals. The final of the 2026 World Cup will be played in New York/New Jersey (MetLife Stadium), on Sunday 19 July, 2026.

This information comes from the BID and is, with regard to the locations, still subject to change. The mentioned dates of the opening game and of the final however, have been finalized.

Final dates and times matches 2026 World Cup

The dates and start times of the matches during the World Cup finals, together with the actual schedule, will follow at a later stage.

Final round: explanation schedule

Click for more information on how the schedule of the World Cup will work in 2026, with a total of 104 matches to be played, including the final.


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FIFA WORLD CUP QUALIFIcation

World Cup Football Qualifiers North America, Central America, Caribbean

Qualification North America, Central America, Caribbean

In North America, Central America and the Caribbean, the FIFA qualifiers run from March 18, 2024 to November 18, 2025. Six, seven or eight of the 32 participating CONCACAF nations qualify, joining hosts USA, Canada and Mexico.

World Cup Football Qualifiers South America

FIFA World Cup football Qualification South America

In South America, the FIFA World Cup qualifiers run from September 7, 2023 to September 9, 2025. A total of 10 CONMEBOL nations participate. Six to seven South American countries will qualify. There is one single round.

World Cup Football Qualifiers Europe

FIFA World Cup football qualification Europe

In Europe, the qualifiers run from March 17, 2025 to March 31, 2026. A total of 55 (of 54) UEFA nations participate. Sixteen European countries will qualify. There is one group stage (Round 1), followed by the European play-offs.

World Cup Football Qualifiers Asia

FIFA World Cup football Qualification Asia

In Asia, the World Cup qualification runs from October 12, 2023 to November, 2025. A total of 46 AFC nations participate. Eight or nine Asian countries will qualify. There are three qualifying rounds, before the play-offs.

World Cup Football Qualifiers Africa

FIFA World Cup football Qualification Africa

In Africa, the World Cup football qualifiers run from November 13, 2023 to November 18, 2025. A total of 54 CAF nations participate. Nine or ten African countries will qualify. There are two qualification rounds.

World Cup Football Qualifiers Oceania

FIFA World Cup football Qualification Oceania

In Oceania, the FIFA qualifiers for the World Cup football run from September, 2024 to March, 2025. Eleven OFC nations participate. One or two Oceanic countries qualify. There are three qualification rounds.


2026 HOST CITies & STADIUMS

Host Cities USA

The 2026 American Dream: the United States is one of the three hosts of the FIFA World Cup Soccer in North America. The USA is the host country with the most - eleven - host cities.

Host Cities Canada

With Vancouver, and Toronto, Canada has two host cities for the world's football finals in North America in 2026. Get more information about the characteristics of these exciting and diverse, dynamic cities.

Host Cities Mexico

With Guadalajara, Mexico City and Monterrey, Mexico has three candidate host cities for the World Cup in 2026. Each host with its specific ambience, history, attractions, hotspots and other features.

Stadiums USA

The United States will have eleven stadiums for the FIFA 2026 World Cup. Click for more information about these fantastic and modern venues in the USA, and which matches they will host.

Stadiums Canada

During the 2026 World Cup finals, these are the two venues in Canada: BC Place Stadium in Vancouver, and BMO Field in Toronto. Find out more about these attractive Canadian stadiums.

Stadiums Mexico

In Mexico, the FIFA 2026 World Cup will take place in these stadiums: Estadio Akron in Guadalajara, the Azteca Stadium in Mexico City and the BBVA Bancomer Stadium in Monterrey.