Next summer’s Copa América Centenario soccer tournament, which will feature some of the world’s best players and 16 teams from North, South and Central America, is set to take place in 10 American cities. The 10 cities hosting the matches were revealed Thursday.
The historic Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif. and MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. made the list and will most likely host some of the most important matches of the tournament, according to Fox Sports. But all of the locations listed have significance and contribute to giving the tournament a national feel.
Sports Illustrated said that CONCACAF confirmed the following cities and stadiums as hosts: CenturyLink Field in Seattle; Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif; University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.; NRG Stadium in Houston; the Citrus Bowl in Orlando; Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.; Soldier Field in Chicago; Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia; and the two previously mentioned (the Rose Bowl in Pasadena and MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.).
The cities were narrowed down from 24 candidates submitted earlier this year. All of the selected venues have a minimum seating capacity of 60,000.
“These 10 cities and venues will provide a fantastic setting for fans across the world to attend Copa América Centenario and allow them to see the amazing passion for soccer in the United States,” U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati said. “The participating teams and fans will be treated to a first-class environment in each city and stadium, adding to the world-class talent that will be competing on the field. We are looking forward to working closely with all of the cities and venues in hosting this prestigious event and creating an extraordinary experience for fans.”
The tournament will run from June 3-26. Since the tournament is on the FIFA calendar, nations will be able to call on their top players, with clubs obligated to release those players.
Mexico, Costa Rica, the USA, Jamaica and winners of the Panama-Cuba and the Trinidad & Tobago-Haiti playoffs will join the 10 CONMEBOL nations in the Copa América tournament.
The international soccer championship, which doubles as the South American championship, has always been held in South America. However, in 2014, the region’s two soccer confederations–Conmebol in South America and Concacaf, which is responsible for Central and North America–announced alongside U.S. Soccer that it would be holding a special tournament in honor of the event’s 100th anniversary.
This could be a good test run for U.S. Soccer as the organization prepares for a possible bid to host the World Cup in the U.S. in 2026. The bidding is expected to begin next year; it was delayed amid the FIFA corruption scandal, the NY Times reported.