The US and Mexico have withdrawn their bid to co-host the 2027 FIFA Women’s World Cup (WWC) to focus on the 2031 edition of the showpiece national team soccer tournament.

The North American countries submitted a bid to FIFA in April 2023, one of three received by world soccer’s governing body for the 2027 event.

It now leaves a joint submission by European nations Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands and a sole bid by Brazil as the remaining candidates.

In what FIFA described as “the most robust and comprehensive bidding process in the history of the FIFA Women’s World Cup”, the governing body has been conducting an evaluation process, including on-site inspection visits that got underway in February, and will publish its findings in a Bid Evaluation Report in May.

Last year, South Africa also withdrew its bid to host the tournament in 2027 to focus on bidding for the 2031 WWC instead.

US Soccer and the Mexican Football Federation announced their withdrawal on Monday (April 29) and believe they will be better positioned for a 2031 bid after they co-host the 2026 men’s World Cup with Canada. The 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games are also taking place in the US.

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In what the federations are calling a historic first, the new bid will call for equal investment as the men’s tournament, “eliminating investment disparities to fully maximize the commercial potential of the women’s tournament.”

US Soccer added that the revised bid will allow it to “build on the learnings and success of the 2026 World Cup, better support our host cities, expand our partnerships and media deals, and further engage with our fans so we can host a record-breaking tournament in 2031.”

The US has hosted the tournament twice before, in 1999 and 2003, while Mexico has never staged the competition.

Cindy Parlow Cone, US Soccer president, said: “Hosting a World Cup tournament is a huge undertaking – and having additional time to prepare allows us to maximize its impact across the globe.

“I’m proud of our commitment to provide equitable experiences for the players, fans, and all our stakeholders. Shifting our bid will enable us to host a record-breaking Women’s World Cup in 2031 that will help to grow and raise the level of the women’s game both here at home as well as across the globe.”

The host(s) of the 2027 WWC will be decided through an open vote by the FIFA Congress in Bangkok, Thailand, on May 17.

Australia and New Zealand hosted the successful 2023 WWC last year. The 2015 tournament was hosted by Canada, while the 2019 edition was staged in France.