What the USA World Cup bid cities mean

Maybe I am reading too much into it, but I am very curious to see where US Soccer chooses to select as stadiums for the World Cup bids today. To me, the bid committee has to decide between two general philosophies when choosing venues.

  1. Reward cities and regions that have shown a long history of supporting, spectating, and participating in soccer.
  2. Use the World Cup as an opportunity to take the game to some places where it otherwise wouldn’t go, such as the interior South (say, Atlanta or Nashville).

Now, I am not suggesting the bid ignore regions of the country where the college and professional men’s game lacks traction, it just means that it might come down to going with a fourth or fifth East coast venue (after mortal locks Boston, New York, and Washington) such as Baltimore or Philadelphia at the price of a venue like Indianapolis or Jacksonville (Especially if they already say yes to Miami.) The same question could be said about the West coast. Would a fourth West coast venue like San Diego (after locks LA, NoCal, and Seattle) cause a Phoenix or Denver to miss out?

The other question I have is whether this is going to be the phase at which cities with potential stadium issues (this means you, St. Louis and Atlanta) get culled.

Here are my preferred picks, not my prediction of where the USSF will go.

  1. New York – Giants Stadium
  2. Boston – Gilette Stadium
  3. Washington – FedEx Field
  4. Philadelphia – Lincoln Financial Field
  5. Baltimore – Ravens Stadium
  6. Charlotte – Whatever they call the Panthers’ stadium
  7. Miami – Dolphins Stadium
  8. Chicago – Soldier Field
  9. Dallas – The Death Star
  10. Houston – Reliant Field
  11. Nashville – LP Field
  12. Phoenix – U of Phoenix Stadium
  13. Los Angeles – Future NFL stadium in City of Industry
  14. San Francisco – Hopefully a new Niners stadium
  15. Seattle – Qwest Field
  16. Denver – Whatever it’s called at Mile High
  17. Cleveland – Browns Stadium
  18. Tampa Bay – Raymond James Stadium

I wish St. Louis and Atlanta had a better stadium situations. Otherwise I would’ve whacked Cleveland or Tampa easily.

My only prediction is that the Hunt family will wrangle a spot for Kansas City. As you can see above, I disagree with that.


14 thoughts on “What the USA World Cup bid cities mean

  1. I love the Baltimore stadium and location (close to downtown, great transit access, etc). It’s a much better situation than Fed-Ex, but I doubt they pick Baltimore over the capital and it’s hard to imagine they would do both.

  2. Out of the Top 10 listed here, only 6 of the stadiums are natural grass fields. The new Giants Stadium is field turf.

    I would see places like Philadelphia, San Diego, Miami, and Houston hosting Quarterfinals, Semi-Finals, and even the Final because 3 of the 4 of these have hosted Super Bowls and all have quality venues, but I would rank Glendale (U of Phoenix Stadium) higher despite its proximity to Phoenix because it has played host to a Super Bowl and annually plays host to a major college football contest.

    If I chose 8 it would be these: Philadelphia, San Diego, Glendale, Miami, Houston, Chicago, Washington, and Denver. I would have the final in Houston because of the retractable roof.

  3. List just announced. No real surprises except one: for not immediately apparent reasons, Chicago did NOT make the cut.

  4. Here are the cities, stadiums, and capacity:

    Atlanta ** Georgia Dome 70,868 **
    Baltimore ** M & T Bank Stadium 71,008 **
    Boston ** Gillette Stadium 73,393
    Dallas ** Cowboys Stadium 91,600**
    Cotton Bowl ** 89,000 **
    Denver ** INVESCO Field 75,165 **
    Houston ** Reliant Stadium 76,000 **
    Indianapolis ** Lucas Oil Stadium 66,500 **
    Kansas City ** Arrowhead Stadium 75,364
    Los Angeles ** Rose Bowl 93,607 **
    Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum ** 89,000
    Miami ** Land Shark Field ** 80,240 **
    Nashville ** LP Field 75,000 **
    NYC New Meadowlands Stadium ** 84,046 **
    Philadelphia ** Lincoln Financial Field ** 69,111 **
    Phoenix University of Phoenix Stadium ** 71,362
    San Diego ** Qualcomm Stadium ** 67,700 **
    Seattle ** Qwest Field 72,500
    Husky Stadium 68,056
    Tampa Raymond James Stadium ** 75,000 **
    Wash, D.C. ** FedEx Field ** 89,690

  5. The interesting thing for me is that in Dallas, both the Cotton Bowl and Cowboys Stadium are still in contention.

    Personally, I would prefer the Cotton Bowl:

    * Holds almost as many people as Cowboys Stadium since its expansion

    * Wide grass field

    * Good public transit

  6. The expansion was mainly just adding ends to the upper tier of the stadium. It still has a very rundown look to it with bench seats, substandard toilet facilities/luxury boxes/concessions. Its easily the worst venue on this list or at least fighting the LA Coliseum for that honor.

  7. I went there over 150 times in the nine or so seasons that the Burn played there. It’s fine. If nothing else, it’s hundreds of yards inside Fair Park and away from the neighborhoods that apparently scare the bejeezus out of people.

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