Soccer fans in Los Angeles might be about to lose out on the experience of a lifetime. An ESPN reporter believes SoFi Stadium is “practically out” of hosting any 2026 World Cup games due to a disagreement with FIFA, the sport’s governing body.
Stan Kroenke, who built the top-of-the-line stadium in Inglewood, is refusing to make changes to the playing area to accommodate soccer, which uses wider field dimensions than that of football, according to ESPN reporter John Sutcliffe.
Kroenke, who owns the L.A. Rams, also owns the Colorado Rapids of the MLS and Arsenal F.C. of the Premier League, as well as numerous other sports teams.
Sutcliffe, who announced the possible venue change in Spanish, said Kroenke is refusing to pay for the changes, which would require the removal of stands and luxury boxes. SoFi had been in the running to host the championship game, but now, it may not host any games at all, he said.
“The final is being fought out between MetLife in New York and AT&T in Dallas, and I understand that Dallas is winning, it would be the headquarters of the World Cup,” said Sutcliffe, as translated for the Daily Mail. “A source told me that they are 90 percent sure that SoFi Stadium, the most expensive stadium in the world, has a design problem.”
“Sutcliffe added that it was incredible that Kroenke didn’t plan for the most expensive stadium in the world to accommodate a soccer field,” the Mail reported.
There are other venues in Los Angeles that could accommodate games, like L.A. Memorial Coliseum and the Rose Bowl, which has hosted World Cup games in the past, including the 1999 Women’s World Cup final in which Brandi Chastain’s famous penalty shot gave the U.S. the win.
However, those locations have not emerged as alternatives as of yet, and they might not at all, as the 2026 World Cup is not being hosted by the U.S. alone, but also Mexico and Canada, providing plenty of alternatives.
Other U.S. cities listed as host sites include Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Houston, Kansas City, Miami, New York/New Jersey, Philadelphia, the San Francisco Bay Area and Seattle.
Karina Cardenas contributed to this report.