He rejected the World Cup for Washington, FedEx Field and Daniel Snyder

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As a bus full of World Cup officials last fall was making its way to FedEx Field from a downtown hotel, one of the delegates, an American football official, told me how they were unpleasantly surprised that the flight was to a potential 2026 men. The World Cup site was taking a long time.

This was only the first thing that opened their eyes.

Upon finally arriving at the stadium in suburban Maryland where the local NFL team plays, those responsible for tube repairs were shown that exploded during a game a few weeks earliershowering the Washington soccer team’s dwindling fan base in a dozen or so seats with a liquid the team’s executives swore wasn’t sewage.

And while the World Cup chiefs were long gone by the end of the season, visiting other potential locations across the county, they were certainly notified of the end-of-season event at FedEx which I would say was a metaphor for the stadium and the franchise that calls it home. Many Philadelphia fans are trying to congratulate winning quarterback Galen Hurts as he walks off the field They had the handrail they were leaning on because of the breakdown He sent them down six feet to the ground. Stadium officials said the railing was not meant to be a weight bearing.

So when World Cup official Colin Smith said Thursday — after it was announced that Washington had not made the cut an official part of the 2026 tournament — it was difficult “… to imagine the World Cup coming to the United States and the capital not playing a major role…” He was just polite. We didn’t deserve the 2026 World Cup, but it’s not our fault.

Blame Daniel Snyder. Because the World Cup officials Everything but decided Snyder Stadium was less than a dump.

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Some of us have gotten so used to our NFL franchise that we were embarrassed in the area, and what happened with the Ravens at Baltimore’s Parkway playing winning football on a stadium built just one year after FedEx at about half the cost, and with a good reputation. Being easy to access and fun.

Some of us get so used to our team that it makes us a national embarrassment, as is the case with Snyder On Wednesday, he refused to appear before a congressional committee Investigating allegations that his team’s workplace is, among other things, anti-women.

But on Thursday it lifted us to a new level of shame: around the world. Thanks Snyder.

To confirm, District’s vision to host the games was abandoned weeks ago, When cities merge bids In a futile attempt to overcome the disadvantages of Washington Stadium. Now, the men’s 2026 World Cup will kick off for one of the few times in nearly 100 years history without the host nation’s capital being the site of a single match. Bonn, West Germany, was eliminated in 1974. Tokyo did not join Seoul when Japan and South Korea co-hosted 2002. While Canada and Mexico host 2026 with the United States as the main hub, Mexico City will host the Games while Ottawa has never been considered.

Even in 1994, when the United States hosted the World Cup for the first time, the soon-to-be demolished RFK Stadium hosted matches even though it had been in the past.

“It was an incredibly competitive process,” Smith said. “All the cities were great. This was a very difficult choice.”

In fact, long before Smith’s teammates toured FedEx, FedEx’s playing surface was criticized as the worst in the NFL after a string of high-profile injuries. The franchise recognized as much when it was I embarked on a major field reconstruction project Right before last season. Apparently, it was a bit too late for World Cup officials to rely on athletes worth hundreds of millions of dollars for their professional teams.

But this rejection was not just about timing. It was about poor oversight of the stadium, rivaled only by poor oversight of the once-essentially NFL franchise.

This may be Snyder’s coup d’état in killing this golden goose from the NFL franchise. The team I grew up with in Division 312 of RFK is long gone. Win diminished. Desirable season ticket No more. Less than 10 years after FedEx opened in 1997, it had grown into the largest NFL stadium with accommodations for 91,000 fans. He was either first or second in attendance in the NFL for a few years. By 2021, it is Attract the second lowest number of ticket buyers in the league.

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This is not only because it is a long journey for many fans, as did the World Cup officials. It’s also a long ride for less and less reason. The team I grew up with won as many playoffs in the ’80s and ’90s as did all but one, San Francisco 49. It was a must-see in person as well as on TV.

Since then, the team, one of the 2000s, has made fewer playoffs than every team in the league except for the Detroit Lions. No wonder attendance has fallen sharply.

Now what has been the crown jewel of professional sports franchises in the region may also be a talent. Nobody likes it.

Earlier this month, amid the countless controversy over the team, Virginia Senate Majority Leader Richard L. Saslow (Fairfax Democrat) He introduced legislation that would have helped fund a new stadium for the Snyder soccer team.

Maryland Governor Larry Hogan has reiterated that his state will cough up $400 million to build the area around FedEx if Snyder wants to sign a new lease after the current one expires in 2027, but he won’t fund a new stadium.

And while the old RFK is set to be demolished, D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser and City Council Divided over how to use the land on it. At the moment, the city doesn’t even own it; The federal government does.

But there is no need to rush to build new or renovate the old. The world’s biggest sporting event has said it won’t come, another shameful achievement for Daniel Snyder.