FC Dallas is a professional soccer club located in Dallas, Texas. The team competes in the Western Conference of Major League Soccer. Founded on June 6, 1995, FC Dallas is one of the ten charter clubs of MLS, having been a member of the league since its inception in 1996. In the same year, it was bought by Lamar Hunt, an American businessman known as AFL and NASL co-founder.
Initially, the club was named Dallas Burn SC. The “burning” name was an obvious reference to the extremely hot climate of Texas and the devastating fire that stroke the city in 1860. The conceptual logo depicting a fire-breathing mustang and a red-and-black color scheme was presented in New York on October 17, 1995.
Unfortunately, investing in the club wasn’t a profitable affair since the revenues did not cover expenses. In 2004, Lamar Hunt announced a large-scale re-branding to attract new fans. The old name seemed to the owner too unusual. Besides, “Burn” as a part of the name appeared to be a bit complicated in terms of graphics and design and inappropriate for the logo.
While choosing a new name, the owners decided to simplify it and focused on the current “FC Dallas.” The franchise was renamed in August 2005 to coincide with the relocation to the new Pizza Hut Park Stadium in Frisco. Re-branding also included the change in the color scheme: the original red-and-black palette was replaced by red, white, and blue (colors of US and Texas flags) with a silver tint. The FC Dallas primary logo was modified as well. The soccer club is owned by Hunt Sports Group, led by brothers Dan and Clark Hunt.
Meaning and History
Originally named Dallas Burn SC, the club’s previous logo was dominated by a fire-breathing mustang behind a stylized “Burn” wordmark. It was an homage to American cowboys and an interpretation of the “flying red horse” – a famous Dallas symbol, placed on the roof of the Magnolia Petroleum Company building in 1934. The old FC Dallas logo was in use until the 2004 re-branding.
1996 – 2004
2005 – today
Lamar Hunt designed the first FC Dallas logo. He hand-drew it at his kitchen table. The franchise owner refused the previous concept: the Texas longhorn replaced the heated mustang. The flame-shaped red spot that adorns the animal’s forehead is the only thing to remind the fiery symbolism of Burn.
The bull’s head on the FC Dallas logo is located inside a triangular-pointed shield. The heraldic element is trimmed with red (outer) and white (inner) outlines. The shield seems to be divided into two parts. The upper part contains the white-scripted “FC Dallas” wordmark on a dark blue background, while the lower part features a half-face longhorn on a red background. The name of the team is written in the strict chopped font. Below it, there are the silver-gray elongated numbers “9” and “6”, which are the reference to 1996, when the club played its inaugural game as the MLS member.
The minimalistic bull is drawn schematically, without additional details. White and blue elements form their silhouette. Dark shadows contrasting to the light ground create a 3D effect of the FC Dallas logo. The white five-pointed star on the animal’s neck is slightly tilted to the right. The star and the color palette pay homage to the ones represented in the Texas state flag and serve to demonstrate the tie between the teams. As for the longhorn, it signifies the kind of Texas cattle that were driven along North Texas trails throughout the 19th century.