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FIFA to assess Mexico’s ability to host 2026 World Cup

Mexico World Cup

FIFA inspectors are currently in Mexico on a five-day visit to determine the country’s suitability to host the 2026 World Cup.

The visit became necessary after a North American report submitted by human rights assessors identified safety risks to people if the country held the event.

The report identifies potential dangers to female fans, human rights activists and news reporters during the tournament.

FIFA inspectors landed in Mexico City first and will continuing investigations in Atlanta, Toronto and New York later, given the final of the 2026 tournament is set to be held in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

When their assignment is done in Mexico, the FIFA delegation will begin work on the rival Moroccan bid. The delegation will likely be tasked to disqualify one of the contenders before a June 13 vote during the FIFA congress in Moscow.

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FIFA is getting more stringent in its host selection process after reports indicated there were gross human rights abuses in Russia and Qatar, the venues for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments. Contenders will have to commission and submit independent human rights reports that analyze risks associated with hosted matches before they can be considered to host the games.

Prepared by Ergon, the North American report disclosed that risks of danger to workers are lower in the US, Canada and Mexico since no new stadiums or significant infrastructure must be added to what is already on ground.

Mexico has revealed it will be starting construction projects worth $15.8 billion in readiness for the World Cup, this includes $3 billion required to renovate existing stadiums and training facilities.

Mexico will be hosting 10 out of the 80 World Cup games in three cities: Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey.