A report from a British newspaper says AT&T Stadium has been selected to host soccer’s biggest match, but FIFA hasn’t officially confirmed.
Arlington,TX (Jan 18 2024) –
North Texas will soon know if Arlington will host the 2026 World Cup Final.
There are reports out Thursday from The Sun that the final match will be held at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, but FIFA is not yet confirming where the championship match will be held.
From inside the Soccer City sporting goods store in Arlington, you can see AT&T Stadium towering in the distance.
Ali Danaifard was working there when a friend sent him a news report: “It said that AT&T’s hosting the World Cup Final in 2026,” Danaifard told NBC5.
British newspaper The Sun was first to report the home of the Dallas Cowboys edged out New York’s Met Life Stadium. The paper also reported North Texas would be the home of FIFA during the event.
The story quickly went viral, as sports pages with huge followings trumpeted the news on social media.
But is it a done deal? NBC5 reached out to FIFA to confirm whether the final will be played in Arlington.
Dallas was named one of 16 host cities for the World Cup back in June 2022, and this fall the president of FIFA came to tour AT&T Stadium himself.
NBC5 asked the Dallas World Cup committee for a response to the report of Arlington being selected as the site for the final.
“We remain optimistic about our chances of hosting the FIFA World Cup 26 Final,” said Monica Paul, Executive Director of the Dallas Sports Commission. “We continue to work with FIFA leadership to lay the groundwork as we prepare to host the largest FIFA World Cup to date and are eager, like the other host cities, to find out what matches will be assigned to us.”
“I can only imagine how big a World Cup Final stage game would be,” Danafaird told NBC5.
Confirmed or not, some soccer fans in Arlington were already dreaming of 2026. Danaifard said his store would usually be flooded with fans whenever international soccer matches were played at the nearby stadium.
“We see a lot of fans stopping by, looking to buy jerseys for the game,” Danaifard said. “We hope it’ll bring more business to us, that’s for sure.”
The final announcement is in about two weeks, and Arlington soccer fans were hoping it would lead to two years of making big plans.
“Obviously stocking up on World Cup jerseys,” Danaifard said. “Hopefully I’ll get to experience it in person.”
Since opening in 2009 as Cowboys Stadium, the venue has hosted Super Bowl XLV, an NCAA men’s basketball tournament, professional boxing, WrestleMania events, award shows, and high school and college football games. The stadium is also home to the annual Cotton Bowl and has hosted several CONCACAF matches.
The 2024 CONCACAF Nations League Finals are scheduled to be played at the stadium in March and Copa American group stage matches are scheduled for this summer.