Minneapolis (Aug. 15, 2017) - Today, Sports Minneapolis, Powered by Meet Minneapolis, announces its intentions to respond to the Request for Information (RFI) by the United Bid Committee of Canada, Mexico and the United States to declare interest to serve as a host city for the 2026 Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) World CupTM. Minneapolis and U.S. Bank Stadium are among the 44 cities and 49 stadiums included in the outreach by the United Bid Committee to provide basic information by Sept. 5, 2017.
Upon responding to the RFI, the United Bid Committee will issue a shortlist of cities by late September and will provide a more detailed bid documentation and conduct meetings as cities prepare their final bids, due early January 2018. The Bid Committee will include 20-25 venues in its final bid to FIFA in March for consideration by FIFA for hosting matches, or possible other opportunities. Full details are included in the attached release from the United Bid Committee.
“Minneapolis and U.S. Bank Stadium already have a reputation for securing major sporting events with the upcoming Super Bowl LII, the 2017 & 2018 X Games and NCAA Men’s Final Four in 2019,” said Melvin Tennant, president & CEO, Meet Minneapolis and executive director, Sports Minneapolis. “Along with our support of the Expo 2023 bid (World’s Fair), being included in this process demonstrates our readiness to welcome the world to our destination. We are very excited to begin this process.”
The Bid Committee is asking cities to provide information about transportation infrastructure, past experience hosting major sporting and cultural events, available accommodations, environmental protection initiatives, potential venues and more in this first stage of the process.
Each venue included in the RFI has to have at least 40,000 seats for group stage matches. U.S. Bank Stadium has 63,000 seats.
“U.S. Bank Stadium is a world-class facility and we are excited to be among the venues chosen to bid on the World Cup in 2026,” said Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority Chair Michael Vekich. “We have experience hosting large events and the Super Bowl in 2018 and the NCAA Men’s Final Four in 2019 will demonstrate that we are successful at hosting some of the most popular sporting events.”
Sports Minneapolis will work closely with partners from U.S. Bank Stadium, the City of Minneapolis and others to provide a complete response.
“U.S. Bank Stadium is excited to partner with Sports Minneapolis on the bid process to become a potential host city for the 2026 FIFA World Cup,” said Patrick Talty, SMG general manager at U.S. Bank Stadium. “The World Cup is a global championship that would provide the opportunity to showcase U.S. Bank Stadium and the state of Minnesota as a premier venue for world-class events.”
“To be included in the list of potential host cities and venues for the 2026 World Cup speaks volumes about Minneapolis-St. Paul and U.S. Bank Stadium,” said Vikings Chief Operating Officer Kevin Warren. “The event provides an exceptional opportunity to highlight this community and our stadium on an international stage, and it would continue an already impressive track record of securing major events in this market.”
“The Twin Cities are among the greatest communities in North America, and represent the best in all aspects of living,” said Dr. William McGuire, Minnesota United FC managing partner. “We have a long-standing and growing passion for soccer that emanates from our diverse community. As a dynamic and progressive region -- with great businesses, outdoor spaces, artistic and sports facilities -- we can provide an unparalleled location and showcase for the World Cup and the international audience that recognizes it as the pinnacle of sporting events.”
Morocco declared its intention to bid on the 2026 World Cup in addition to the United Bid Committee of Canada, Mexico and the United States. FIFA will select one of these two bidders at the FIFA Congress in June 2018.
News release: United Bid Committee Commences Outreach for Potential Official Host Cities in Bid for 2026 FIFA World Cup
ABOUT SPORTS MINNEAPOLIS
Sports Minneapolis is focused on recruiting, enhancing and producing sporting events in the Minneapolis area for the benefit of our community. In addition to generating significant estimated economic impact, amateur and professional sports events can help connect the community through sport, fostering health and wellness.
Minneapolis is on a winning streak in securing major sports events over the last several years, including the 2014 Major League Baseball All-Star Game, Super Bowl LII in 2018, the X Games in 2017 and 2018 and the NCAA Men’s Final Four in 2019, among others. Sports Minneapolis has played a major role in bringing these events to Minneapolis, along with events like Northern Lights Junior Volleyball Qualifier, National Collegiate Hockey Conference Frozen Faceoff and many other professional, collegiate and amateur sporting events.
For more information, visit www.sportsminneapolis.org.
ABOUT MEET MINNEAPOLIS
Meet Minneapolis is a private, not-for-profit, member-based association. It actively promotes and sells the Minneapolis area as a destination for conventions and meetings, works to maximize the visitor experience and markets the city as a desirable tourist destination to maximize the economic benefit to the greater Minneapolis area.
Meet Minneapolis is accredited by the Destination Marketing Accreditation Program (DMAP) of the Destination Marketing Association International.
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Kristen Montag, Meet Minneapolis senior public relations and communications manager, 612-767-8038, email@example.com, @Minneapolis_PR on Twitter