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Montreal withdraws bid to host FIFA World Cup in 2026

Montreal is no longer one of the Canadian cities looking to host the FIFA World Cup in 2026.

The city announced Tuesday morning that it had withdrawn its candidacy to host the soccer championship, citing a lack of funding.

In a statement, local officials specifically point to the Quebec government’s withdrawal from the proposal. Quebec had said it wouldn’t fund the event, citing cost overruns that would have been difficult to justify to taxpayers.

The city says it “prevents” Montreal from moving forward but that it had repeated discussions with partners in order to assess various options and agree on the next steps.

“We wish the cities of Toronto and Edmonton good luck in their respective candidacies,” the city said.

Read more: FIFA sets late 2021 target date to pick 2026 World Cup host cities

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Canada Soccer acknowledged the decision in a statement Tuesday morning. It will continue to work with provincial and municipal governments to support the other two potential host cities in the country.

“We thank the City of Montreal for their participation in the bid process,” the organization said.

FIFA, for its part, also thanked the city for its participation and all stakeholders for their efforts to host the tournament.

The World Cup is scheduled to take place in Canada, the United States and Mexico in June and July 2026. The governing body said it is working closely with host associations “in this highly competitive selection process involving a variety of very strong and diverse candidates across the three countries.”

FIFA said Tuesday that the plan is to visit potential venues this fall and unveil its final choice of host cities in 2022.

Click to play video: 'Local soccer ref hopes to be ‘booking’ ticket to FIFA Women’s World Cup' Local soccer ref hopes to be ‘booking’ ticket to FIFA Women’s World Cup
Local soccer ref hopes to be ‘booking’ ticket to FIFA Women’s World Cup – Jan 19, 2021

with files from The Canadian Press

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