World Cup

FIFA Delegation Visiting Arlington as Planning for World Cup 2026 Continues

Local officials are vying for Dallas to host a semi-final or final match, which would take economic impact to a whole new level

DFW regional leaders spent Sunday rolling out the red carpet for international soccer delegates as part of Dallas' bid to become a FIFA World Cup 2026 host city.
NBC 5 News

The countdown to the FIFA World Cup coming to Dallas continues.

Dallas has already secured a spot as one of 16 host cities for the tournament, but will it win a bid to host a world cup final match?

That's what FIFA officials are still deciding during a visit to AT&T Stadium in Arlington on Thursday.

According to the Dallas Sports Commission, the delegation is looking at some “technical items and aspects" during what is considered a "routine visit" in FIFA's planning process.

Arlington is competing with Atlanta, Los Angeles and New York to host the biggest match of the tournament.

Fair Park in Dallas is also considered to be the international broadcast headquarters for world media covering the events.

Either way, local businesses are excited about the impact this could have on revenue.

Boiling Tails Co. sits just yards away from the stadium's front doors on Collins Street. They're used to hosting massive football tailgate parties but are ready to handle the soccer tailgaters in three years.

"It gets super busy but we're super stoked about more business that's going to be coming our way,” said manager Shelby Strickland. "It's going to be super great.”

Local planning officials have said that every match that takes place in North Texas would be like a Super Bowl, economically speaking.

"It's bringing a lot of business, it's helping a lot of the businesses out here – it's really impacting everything,” said Strickland.

But before AT&T stadium can host any FIFA match, field improvements have to be made. The field needs to be raised 4 to 6 feet to expand the width and comply with official field measurements set by FIFA officials.

According to FC Dallas officials, those renovations could cost millions, paid for by an economic trust fund run by the state. It’s unknown at this time exactly how much the cost to renovate the field.

Thursday's visit was private and closed to the media.

FIFA officials are expected to announce later this year or early next year which city will host the final – and exactly how many matches will be played at AT&T Stadium.

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