Chiefs Super Bowl rally shooting noted around the world, especially by World Cup fans

Blair Kerkhoff, The Kansas City Star on

Published in Football

KANSAS CITY, Mo — Soccer fans are taking a strong interest in the shooting in Kansas City on Wednesday that left one dead and 23 wounded.

The World Cup is coming to Kansas City in 2026, a joyous occasion, just as the Chiefs’ Super Bowl parade was until moments after the team left the stage at Union Station. That’s when shots rang out.

“First and foremost, we extend our deepest sympathies to the families and victims of yesterday’s tragedy. Our thoughts are with the entire community,” a FIFA spokesperson told The Kansas City Star on Thursday. “Fan and player safety and security is an essential part of the overall operations of the FIFA World Cup. We continue to work closely with Federal, state, tribal and municipal authorities, along with the host city committees, to set the best safety and security standards for the tournament in 2026.”

Others in the soccer community have chimed in with their reactions.

Apple TV soccer analyst Taylor Twellman wondered if visitors could be scared away from World Cup destinations in the United States. On his X (formerly Twitter) account, Twellman called it “Disgraceful. Imagine when the World Cup is here, why would a visitor feel safe?!”

Kansas City learned last week that it will play host to six World Cup games at Arrowhead Stadium in June and July, 2026, including a quarterfinal match.

Additionally, the region is in play for fan festivals, with Union Station as a site, and base camps where national teams and their fans set up headquarters.

At least one other World Cup city dealt with a mass shooting on the same day. In Atlanta, four high school students were shot in a school parking lot. All the victims were taken to the hospital. None had life-threatening injuries.

The day of the shootings, Feb. 14, marked the six-year anniversary of the mass shooting at Parkland High School in Florida, where 17 students died and 17 more were injured. Parkland is about 40 miles north of Miami, another World Cup host city.


Some soccer fans from around the world weighed in on America’s gun violence after the Kansas City shooting and questioned whether the U.S., which is sharing the host duties with Mexico and Canada, should be a host nation.

The Kansas City Sports Commission also released a statement following the shooting.

“Today’s celebration ended in a horrific and needless act of violence. We grieve for those directly impacted, as well as their family and friends. We grieve that a moment of joy for Kansas City was turned into a time of fear.

“Our staff and volunteers — while deeply shaken — are safe. Thank you to our local, state and federal law enforcement partners for their swift action to secure the scene and prevent further casualties. As we continue to learn more, we remain committed to maintaining constant communication with the Mayor’s office and Kansas City Police Department.”

Kansas City has held large sports spectator events around Union Station in previous years. The parade was the third since 2020, and the fourth in less than a decade celebrating a team championship. Hundreds of thousands greeted the Royals’ World Series team in 2015.

Also, Union Station was the site of last year’s NFL draft, where an estimated 312,000 packed the National World War I Museum and Memorial and Union Station over a three-day period.

No major incidents were reported for the previous events.

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