Earlier today it was announced that the 2026 world cup will be held at least partly in Canada.
This is big news for Canadian soccer fans obviously who have been going wild on the internet, but it’s probably even bigger news to the Canadian soccer team.
And their coach couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity the team has because of the announcement.
“It’s starting to hit home now, that, wow, it’s here. We’ve landed a World Cup. In not many people’s lifetime did they ever experience a home World Cup and Canadians are going to get it. Wow, it’s phenomenal,” John Herdman said in an interview this morning.
“Our Canadian kids have got a big opportunity and I think that 2026 makes sure that many of them that might have left our shores to play for other countries will stay,” John Herdman said in an interview this morning.
“We’ll get the team performing and we’ll qualify if we have to,” he said.
Traditionally host countries automatically qualify for the world cup but it’s a little unclear how it will work this time because the hosting will be split between Canada, the United States and Mexico.
There are only 7 spots available in the World Cup for countries from North America, Central America and the Caribbean, but Herdman is adamant that Canada will participate.
“We’re not missing our own home World Cup. It’s that simple,” he says.
Canada has not participated in a world cup since 1986, but Herdman is up for the challenge.
“We are going to be ready,” Herdman says.
However, with the current Canadian team sitting at 79th in the FIFA world ranking, and an average world ranking of 80th it'll be a long and hard crawl to the top for them in 2016.
We're not saying it's impossible - but it will be a huge underdog story if we do manage to make it to the games in 2026.