FIFA has pledged to reveal the candidate each member voted for in the race for the 2026 World Cup following a series of corruption allegations in the process for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments.
In a 35-page document published yesterday, FIFA claimed they had made the decision as part of a “transparent” process for the 2026 World Cup. The organization also confirmed the process will be scrutinized by an independent audit company.
The guide to the bidding process for the 2026 event documents information on the bid rules of conduct, key principles, the evaluation process and criteria, timelines as well as requirements relating to Government support and compliance. The rules of conduct include a series of core ethical principles, such as a prohibition on “inappropriate gifts” and barring collusion between Member Associations. Funding of development projects and friendly matches are also outlined in the document.
These particular elements were part of the controversial bidding race for the 2018 and 2022 competitions, won by Russia and Qatar respectively.
Russia and Qatar were awarded the respective events at the same time in December 2010 but the bids were plagued by allegations of corruption.
The Garcia Report, eventually released in full by FIFA in June, seemed to clear both countries of any severe wrongdoing but accused some bidders of unethical behaviour.
World football’s governing body revealed the joint effort from the United States, Canada and Mexico and sole rival Morocco would be subjected to a more stringent and important evaluation process.
A 2026 Bid Evaluation Task Force has been established by FIFA to inspect bids for the tournament.
Should a candidate not meet the criteria, which include set requirements regarding stadiums, projected costs and accomodation, they risk being excluded from the race, FIFA warned.
The reports from the newly-created Task Force will be serve as the basis of the evaluation by the FIFA Council, who will shortlist the bids to be put forward to a vote at the Congress in June.
The host of the 2026 World Cup is due to be announced at the governing body’s Congress in Moscow on June 13.
If neither the joint North American effort or bid from Morocco is chosen, a new process will then be launched, with a host confirmed at the 2020 Congress.
The bids from the US, Canada and Mexico and Morocco must be submitted to FIFA by March 16.