Arlington's AT&T Stadium to Become 'Dallas Stadium' for 2026 World Cup, Sparking Local Debate

Arlington's AT&T Stadium to Become 'Dallas Stadium' for 2026 World Cup, Sparking Local Debate

In a move that's generating both excitement and controversy, Arlington's AT&T Stadium will be temporarily renamed 'Dallas Stadium' for the duration of the 2026 World Cup. This decision, announced by FIFA, aligns with their policy against corporate sponsorships on competition venues. Despite the stadium being located in Arlington, the change aims to highlight Dallas, the region's largest city and the name behind the successful World Cup bid.

Dallas is set to host an unprecedented nine matches during the event, the highest number in any city across the three host nations. This lineup includes five group stage games, three knockout rounds, and one semifinal, all set to take place at the newly named Dallas Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys.

The renaming has sparked a mixed reaction from the public. Social media has been abuzz with comments ranging from confusion over the stadium's actual location to calls for protest from Tarrant County residents. Some voiced their surprise humorously, suggesting that Arlington might as well be renamed in the process.

Arlington Mayor Jim Ross, however, has expressed his support for the decision, emphasizing the practicality and recognition that comes with using the Dallas name. Ross acknowledges the significance of Dallas as North Texas's largest city and sees the renaming as a beneficial move for the entire region. He highlights the collaborative effort of various North Texas cities in securing the World Cup bid, underlining the community spirit and shared benefits of hosting the games.

Monica Paul and her team at the Dallas Sports Commission have been specifically praised by Mayor Ross for their diligent efforts in landing the region's World Cup bid. The Mayor sees the event as an opportunity for FIFA and the world to recognize North Texas's strong community, which he believes played a pivotal role in securing the most games for the region.

Meanwhile, a public relations firm representing the Dallas bid clarified that 'Dallas Stadium' is currently a placeholder name and could undergo further changes. Similar renaming will occur at other venues, such as MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, which will host the World Cup Final and be known as 'New York New Jersey Stadium.'

The 2026 World Cup is scheduled to kick off on June 11, 2026, in Mexico City, with Arlington's first game slated for June 14. Fans eager to experience the spectacle first-hand will need to register their interest to score tickets for this globally anticipated event.