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The Battle for FIFA World Cup 2026 Final Host City: Dallas vs. New York vs. Los Angeles

Jerry Jones, owner of the Dallas Cowboys, has a proven track record of hosting major events at AT&T Stadium, which can accommodate up to 100,000 people.

In a high-stakes bid to secure the prestigious honor of hosting the FIFA World Cup 2026 Final, the race is heating up as Dallas, New York, and Los Angeles vie for the opportunity. FIFA President Gianni Infantino recently made an appearance at an NFL game between the Dallas Cowboys and the New York Jets at AT&T Stadium in Texas, seated alongside Cowboys owner Jerry Jones in his private box. This strategic move was a clear indication of Dallas' ambition to be considered a prime candidate for the World Cup Final host. However, the competition is fierce, with New York and Los Angeles also emerging as strong contenders.

The selection of the host city for the FIFA World Cup Final is a decision that carries immense significance. Not only is the World Cup the most prominent sporting event globally, generating a staggering $8 billion in revenue every four years, but it also draws millions of international visitors to the host country. A staggering 1.5 billion viewers, roughly 20% of the world's population, tuned in to watch the 2022 World Cup Final between France and Argentina.

When it was announced that the United States, along with Canada and Mexico, would jointly host the 2026 Men's FIFA World Cup, a race among cities commenced to secure their position as a host. The announcement included 16 host cities, with the United States claiming the lion's share of 11 positions, Mexico securing three, and Canada being awarded two.

New York City and Los Angeles quickly emerged as front-runners for hosting the knockout games and the final. Their appeal is evident for various reasons. New York City, as the largest metropolitan area in the United States with 19.6 million residents, boasts an enormous media market. Its accessibility for international travelers and potential for corporate sponsorships and suite sales make it an attractive option. MetLife Stadium, with its 82,500 seats, would be the centerpiece venue.

Los Angeles is a strong contender as well. SoFi Stadium, which would need to expand its capacity by 10,000 seats to meet FIFA's requirement of 80,000 seats for the World Cup Final, is a $5 billion state-of-the-art facility that would easily surpass any previous World Cup venue. The high demand for tickets in Los Angeles, exemplified by LAFC consistently selling out 100% of its 22,000-seat stadium, adds to its allure.

However, Dallas is far from conceding the competition. Jerry Jones, owner of the Dallas Cowboys, has a proven track record of hosting major events at AT&T Stadium, which can accommodate up to 100,000 people. The stadium's retractable roof is designed to combat the summer heat, ensuring the comfort of attendees. With an impressive 160-foot wide and 72-foot tall video board and a plethora of dining and entertainment options, the stadium offers an enticing experience.

AT&T Stadium also boasts a significant number of luxury suites, which range from $10,000 to $35,000, making it a lucrative option for FIFA. All these factors have bolstered Dallas' case as a strong contender.

Considering all these factors, the question remains: Where will the FIFA World Cup 2026 Final ultimately take place? While New York City and Los Angeles are compelling options, certain challenges could sway the decision. MetLife Stadium's scorching temperatures and lack of pre- and post-game activities, compounded by the absence of a robust public transportation system, may pose difficulties for visitors. Similarly, SoFi Stadium, while impressive, falls short of FIFA's seating capacity requirement and may necessitate a noon kickoff to accommodate European timezones.

This brings us back to Dallas. Despite its relatively lower name recognition compared to New York City and Los Angeles, AT&T Stadium's strengths shine through. With a climate-proof retractable roof, an international airport just 15 minutes away, and unmatched television viewing potential thanks to its colossal capacity, video board, and luxury suites, AT&T Stadium presents a compelling case for hosting the final. Moreover, hosting semifinal matches in New York City and Los Angeles and having the two remaining teams converge in Dallas for the final could be a prudent strategy.

In the end, the decision will hinge on a blend of factors, from economic impact and job creation to the ability to provide an exceptional experience for fans and viewers. One thing is certain, though: as the battle for hosting the FIFA World Cup 2026 Final intensifies, the competition among these iconic American cities will be nothing short of fierce. Jerry Jones, with his remarkable track record in the business of sports, is unlikely to back down, and New York City and Los Angeles will undoubtedly put up a formidable fight for this coveted opportunity. With thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars at stake, the race to be the host city for the world's most prestigious soccer event is on.

Undrafted Team


Tuesday, September 26, 2023

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