KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City leaders know they have their work cut out for them before the 2026 World Cup.
But after receiving confirmation that Kansas City, Missouri, will host 2026 World Cup matches, they were able to relax and celebrate the last five years of hard work.
"How about it, Kansas City?" Kansas City Chiefs CEO and Chairman Clark Hunt said Thursday. "This affirms what we already know — that Kansas City is a world-class sports town and premier destination for the world's biggest sporting events."
Clark thanked the efforts of those involved in KCMO's bid process, which were instrumental in impressing FIFA officials.
"Throughout the bid process, leaders at FIFA consistently told me how impressed they were with Kansas City," Clark said. "That is a testament to Kathy (Nelson) and Katharine (Holland), and the city and state leaders who worked so hard on our bid."
Hunt's confidence in Kansas City as a host city is one that KCMO Mayor Quinton Lucas echoed.
"We will be the best damn World Cup host in the history of the world," Lucas said.
Knowing how much work is ahead in the next four years, Lucas reflected on how much progress Kansas City has already made.
"If you remember this area a few years ago, there wasn't Power and Light, there wasn't the new arena, there wasn't Sporting Park in KCK, there wasn't streetcar," he said. "But look at where we are today."