Los Angeles' dream of hosting 2026 World Cup final in danger over SoFi Stadium dimensions
- SoFi Stadium one of finest U.S. venues
- But field might not be wide enough for final
- Capacity also a concern
WHAT HAPPENED? There's a genuine chance that FIFA will award MetLife Stadium in New Jersey the 2026 World Cup final unless SoFi Stadium, which was financed by Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke, makes changes, according to The Times.
While Los Angeles is guaranteed to host games earlier in the tournament, the width of SoFi Stadium's field reportedly needs to be increased for the final - possibly by as much as 63 feet - which would mean removing some of the seats close to the pitch and raising the playing surface. Additionally, a capacity of 70,000 may be deemed too small for the deciding match.
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THE BIGGER PICTURE: If Los Angeles doesn't host the World Cup final, the New York metro area would be seen as a possible alternative, with the NFL's MetLife Stadium already set to put on other games in the competition. MetLife Stadium seats 82,000 people.
AND WHAT'S MORE: The last time the World Cup was in the United States, the Los Angeles area hosted the final at the Rose Bowl.
IN TWO PHOTOS:
DID YOU KNOW? FIFA announced this week that the 2026 World Cup would be expanded to a record 104 matches.
WHAT NEXT FOR SOFI STADIUM? Kroenke is no doubt aware of the issue, and he has three years to work out how to ensure the World Cup final takes place in his state-of-the-art venue. However, the capacity concerns may be difficult to handle.
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