FIFA considering hosting 2023 Club World Cup in the United States… as America emerges as the front runner ahead of Abu Dhabi and China to host Real Madrid and other continental champions
- Soccer’s governing body could not reach an agreement with other potential sites
- That leaves the United States as the preferred option to host the matches
- An American club will take part in the CWC for the first time, as Seattle won the CONCACAF Champions League this season
As the global football calendar undergoes a crunch with the World Cup being held in November and December, FIFA continues to find a home for its club version of the tournament.
Reports from Spanish outlet AS say the United States is now the front runner to host the tournament after previously considering two other sites.
FIFA reportedly wanted to stage the Club World Cup in either Abu Dhabi or China, but no agreements could be made with either site.
As Champions League winners, Real Madrid would represent UEFA and earn a bye to the semi-finals. Joining them there would be the winner of the upcoming Copa Libertadores final between Brazilian clubs Flamengo and Atletico Paranaense.
The Club World Cup has not been FIFA’s main focus, but the US could be this season’s hosts
A Real Madrid-Barcelona match in Las Vegas this summer drew over 61,000 fans
The second round would see the introduction of three teams: CAF Champions League winners Wydad Casablanca of Morocco, CONCACAF Champions League winners Seattle Sounders FC, and the yet-to-be-crowned AFC Champions League winner.
Previous editions of the tournament have seen the first round played between an OFC Champions League winner and the title winner of the host nation’s domestic league competition. In this case, were the US to be chosen, the winner of the MLS Cup would face OFC winners Auckland City FC.
Seattle became the first team from the United States to ever win the CONCACAF Champions League, and regardless of a host site, would be the first American representatives in the Club World Cup.
There is no indication of any city being named the preferred site.
Real Madrid will be hoping to raise the trophy for the fifth time, with the club already holding the record for the most Club World Cup titles.
If they do so, they will achieve the club’s first ever sextuple, having already won the domestic treble in Spain alongside the Champions League and UEFA Supercup.
Only two sides in history have won the sextuple. Real’s hated rivals Barcelona accomplished the feat in 2009 and their major European rivals Bayern Munich completed their back in 2020.
Real Madrid have won this competition four times before, but never to clinch a sextuple