What Comes First: USA Wins World Cup or Cannabis is Legalized?

World Cup soccer and marijuana


Dateline New York, July 2026 – In front of a crowd of over 80 thousand fans, and over 3 billion around the world, in the final match of the World Cup, the United States National men’s soccer team defeats the United Republic of Korea 2-0 to win their first ever world cup. Led by their Captain Christian Pulisic’s goal and assist, the US started fast and finished strong. Pulisic the 27-year old “wundermann” who first played for the USA as a17 year old phenomenon is now an annual contender for the Golden Boot award as the best player in Europe.

That’s not a fake news headline but a hopeful future one, now that the World Cup soccer tournament will be returning to North America in 8 years. The draw of the American dollar (more money for TV rights to the 2018 tournament in US than any other nation), and an already existing infrastructure of World Class stadiums and hospitality was something FIFA (Federation of International Football –soocer- Associations) could not pass on when it awarded the tournament to the combined bid of USA, Mexico and Canada in June 2018. (Some think they should have hosted this quadrennial tournament in 2022 instead of Qatar!)

In 8 more years, don’t be surprised if media refers to the tournament as the “Cannabis Cup” since Canada is just weeks away from national legalization of the controversial crop, and the USA is moving towards a schedule reclassification, that could come sooner than later. By the way, I’m not sure which is more unbelievable, that soccer in America is getting the respect it deserves, or that cannabis legalization is supported by over 60% of Americans! (And now the World Health Organization of the United Nations has called cannabis a “relatively safe effective drug.”   

I’ve always dreamed of the day when the United States could field a national team of men’s soccer players that could compete for the World Cup with the greatest “futbol” nations of Brazil, Germany, and Italy (13 of 21 Cup Titles among those 3 nations). Even though the US failed to qualify (So did Italy!) for the tournament in Russia this month, there is hope for the future thanks to a phenomenal core of young US talent (19 playing internationally and another 12 with MLS clubs) already playing in some of the top leagues in Europe led by Christian Pulisic, the child of two former soccer professionals who played at George Mason University in the 90’s.

Like so many international developments in the modern world, the almighty dollar drives progress. Money dictated the winning bid by the USA, Mexico and Canada, and it’s money that is driving the legalized cannabis movement in North America. Now if we could only buy some more talent on the soccer pitch, I might just live to see the day when the United States wins the World Cup.  Shots, bong hits, and edibles for all!

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Jimmy Young is the host of In the Weeds as well as the founder of the Pro Cannabis Media, the voice of cannabis at procannabismedia.com. PCM produces and distributes cannabis-themed podcasts, videocasts, live streams, and branded content from a diverse array of talented journalists and storytellers, anchored by its industry news and trend reporting. PCM's original podcasts include In The Weeds with Jimmy Young, Weed Talk Now, and Weed Talk News! A native New Englander, Jimmy is a product of the Newton, MA public schools. In 1979 he graduated from Tufts University where he started his 40 year career as sports producer at WBZ TV4 at the age 20. Hired by the CBS affiliate in Portland Maine in 1981 as a sports anchor/reporter, Jimmy worked at WGME TV13 for 11 years hosting shows, reporting from major sports events, and doing play by play for area colleges and high schools. In 1992, he returned to his hometown of Newton, MA where he joined the original team of New England Cable News. He hosted "Jimmy Young's Sports World" at NECN from 1992-98. He also won a regional Emmy Award for the nation's first TV sports talk show for kids, Kid Company's Sportworld with Drew Bledsoe as special guest. He currently lives in Needham, MA.