Atlanta lands eight 2026 World Cup matches


ATLANTA – Atlanta has been selected to host eight World Cup matches in the summer of 2026.

Mercedes-Benz Stadium in downtown Atlanta will be the site for five group stage matches, a round of 32 contest, a round of 16 match and a semifinal, the international soccer organization FIFA announced Sunday.

The dates for the group stage matches will be June 15, 18, 21, 24, and 27. The round of 32 contest will take place July 1, the round of 16 contest on July 7, and a semifinal on July 15.

The tournament draw won’t be announced until December of next year.

Atlanta landed the games following a competition among 22 cities in 2018, with 16 cities awarded games in 2022.

“With world-class venues, accommodations and our unmatched Southern hospitality, Georgia is ready to to welcome the world to our capital city,” Gov. Brian Kemp said. “With a strong record of hosting major sporting events, the people of our state are prepared and capable to meet the needs of this once-in-a-lifetime event.”

Atlanta’s history of hosting major sporting events includes serving as the host city for the 1996 Summer Olympics. The city also hosted pro football’s Super Bowl in 2019 and has been the site of five NCAA men’s basketball Final Four tournaments.

Atlanta also is building a reputation as a soccer center. The city’s Major League Soccer team – Atlanta United – won the league championship in 2018, and the U.S. Soccer Federation chose Fayette County in December as the site of a first-of-its-kind National Training Center.

But those pale in comparison to the World Cup. An analysis by the Boston Consulting Group forecasted the 2026 World Cup will generate $5 billion in new economic activity, including $415 million in net economic benefit.

The other semifinal game will take place at AT&T Stadium in the Dallas area. The championship game will be decided at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.