Toronto Mayor Olivia Chow came wearing shin pads, running shoes, soccer scarf and a smile. The federal government came with $104.34 million to help cover the costs of the Toronto end of the 2026 World Cup.

The funding announcement, made Friday morning at BMO Field where the city will stage six games two years from now, follows the news that Ottawa is contributing $116.66 million to help pay for the seven matches Vancouver is staging.

In February, the Ontario government announced $97 million in funding for the event contingent on matching funds from Ottawa.

The 2026 World Cup is scheduled to run June 11 to July 19 across Canada, the United States and Mexico.

Canada and Mexico, which has three host cities to Canada’s two, will each host 13 matches, with the U.S. staging the remaining 78 across its 11 host cities. Toronto and Vancouver will each host five opening-round matches plus a round-of-32 knockout match. Vancouver will also stage a round-of-16 game.

Toronto has estimated hosting its piece of the expanded 48-team soccer showcase will cost $380 million, an increase of $80 million compared to a 2022 forecast. One-third of that involves security and policing cost.

Upgrades to BMO Field to increase seating capacity to meet FIFA requirements are another cost, as are fanfest facilities.

Vancouver officials announced Tuesday that hosting seven games at B.C. Place Stadium could cost up to $581 million, more than double the estimate from two years ago.

Estimates have gone up in part because Canada is staging 13 games, up from the original 10. And also because such costs always go up.

The hope is they don't.

"Right now my expectation is we all stay squarely within these investments," said Carla Qualtrough, federal minister of sport and physical activity. "So that's the plan."

Neil Lumsden, Ontario's minister of tourism, culture and sport, echoed those words.

"That is the plan — to stay within the number we put on the table as we put our chips in the middle," said Lumsden, a former CFL star running back.

While Toronto's remaining bill for the tournament remains extensive at some $170 million-plus, Chow opted to see the glass half-full.

"I'm just very excited to be receiving over $100 million from the federal government," she told reporters after the announcement. "Combine that with the provincial contribution, we are all set to go for FIFA World Cup '26."

Asked if the city can afford those costs, Chow said: "The bid is signed. We will move forward. I will do my best to contain the costs."

Qualtrough also saw the positives.

"FIFA 2026 will unite our country like nothing else can," she said. "I mean you don't see all three levels of government like this often so you know that's the power of sport."

"Canada is home to the world," she added. "And in 2026, the world will feel right at home here."

Qualtrough said the federal contribution will "support the operation and capital expenses of these (Toronto) matches."

"These funds will help make hosting the games possible, six games," Chow said. "It will support our infrastructure and enhancement, operating costs, the cost to hype up the games and get some of the legacy that we know will come forward later on.

"The funds will help us welcome hundreds and thousands of people to our city, to showcase Toronto to the world."

Qualtrough said the federal government will also help with border services, security and intelligence, and work visas and co-ordinate the more than 40 federal departments and agencies involved in the event.

"It's a work in progress in terms of what those resources will be," said Qualtrough. "But we have looked over the next two years and anticipate being able to absorb those costs within existing resources."

The city expects the World Cup to create more than 3,500 jobs, attract 300,000 out-of-town visitors, and generate approximately $393 million in gross domestic product for Toronto and $456 million in GDP for Ontario.

There was a brief sighting of former Canada coach John Herdman in the stands during the news conference. Herdman, who now coaches Toronto FC, was at the stadium for a training session with his MLS team ahead of Saturday's game against visiting FC Dallas.

He was not around to see Chow and Qualtrough kick a ball around his field.

Chow said the World Cup is a chance to showcase Toronto to the world and for Torontonians to come together.

"After the pandemic, people are feeling very isolated," she said. "We have a city (where) some people are feeling lonely. We've lost over 300,000 volunteers. This is the time that we bring people back out through the love of sports and have them participate. And (the) FIFA World Cup is one way that we could engage the citizens of Toronto."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 3, 2024.