24 USA cities plan to submit bids to host Centennial Copa America
Twenty-four areas in the United States have expressed interest in hosting games during next year’s Centennial Copa America.
The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football announced the list Thursday and said 8-13 stadiums will be announced in May as sites for the 16-nation tournament, to be played from June 3-26, 2016.
CONCACAF recommends a seating capacity of 50,000 or more for venues in the tournament, which will feature all 10 national teams from South America and six from CONCACAF, including the United States, Mexico, Costa Rica and Jamaica.
"We are looking forward to taking the first step in the organization of this historic event that will unite the Americas and the world in 2016," said CONCACAF President Jeffrey Webb. "The unique opportunities that we have with the Centennial Cup America, flanked by the 2015 and 2017 Gold Cups will help set the stage to demonstrate how our region is ready to welcome back another FIFA World Cup in 2026."
"This historic event is the best way to honor our football founders," CONMEBOL President Juan Angel Napout said in a released statement. "It is also a unique opportunity to widen the football landscape across the three Americas and to that matter I would like to thank President Webb for his vision to embark in this joint CONMEBOL and CONCACAF project."
The deadline for venues to submit their proposal is March 16, 2015, and the winning cities will be announced in May.
"The interest level from cities across the nation has been phenomenal," said U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati. "Everyone understands the tournament will be a huge event during the summer of 2016, and it’s exciting to see all of these cities putting together bids to be involved. With over 18 months until the tournament starts, we already are starting to see the impact and interest the tournament will have with soccer fans across the United States."
The 24 cities expressing interest in hosting the Centennial Copa America tournament include:
Arizona (1): Phoenix
California (3): Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco
Colorado (1): Denver
District of Columbia (1): Washington, D.C.
Florida (3): Jacksonville, Orlando, Tampa
Georgia (1): Atlanta
Illinois (1): Chicago
Indiana (1): Indianapolis
Maryland (1): Baltimore
Massachusetts (1): Boston
Michigan (1): Detroit
Missouri (2): Kansas City, St. Louis
New York/New Jersey (1): Greater New York
Ohio (1): Cleveland
Pennsylvania (1): Philadelphia
Tennessee (1): Nashville
Texas (2): Dallas, Houston
Washington (1): Seattle
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.