By Zanib Asghar
As many of you know, American sports were not all that popular here in London. But over the years, their “football’ which considered our ‘rugby’ has started to attract some attention.
Whether the Monday Night Football (MNF) scene will become as popular as the Premier League is, we don’t know, but what we do know is that come September 2013 and we’ll have our very own live MNF in Wembley Stadium.
David Tossell, Director of Public Affairs at NFL London, spoke about the success American Football could have in London, “NFL has been present in the UK since the 1980’s and it already has quite a large fan base here already.
“The NFL owners are interested in expanding NFL, it’s already as big as it can be in the states, so they’ve been looking into playing games internationally since 2007.”
“The UK was the most obvious choice for us as the games already been available for everyone here as it is. Fans in the UK have been watching the game for years and years, so we think it will pick up as we have more live games down here.”
“We know we won’t be as big as the Premier League is, but if we can be everyone’s second or even third favourite, then it will open up a whole fan base for us in the UK.”
It was officially announced by the NFL that at least one game will be played at Wembley Stadium each year, till new contract talks begin in 2016.
As they step on international ground, a home team was established in talks that took place between the NFL and Wembley Stadium that the Jacksonville Jaguars would be the home team in Wembley. The Jaguars will play their first game here in October 2013.
Alongside securing the Wembley stadium for two 2013 games, NFL officials have also been in talks with Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, over staging matches at the London Olympic Stadium.
Enthusiastic football fan, Safeer Zaman says, “I’ve been to a NFL game in the States and as popular as it was there, it won’t be here. As someone who loves the Premier League and watches football all the time, I wasn’t into the match over there. I don’t think it will stay for long and if it does not that many people are going to go to the games.”
To purchase tickets and for the latest updates on future matches in the UK visit the Official NFL UK Website.
Watch the Super Bowl 9 where the American Football Conference (AFC) champion Pittsburgh Steelers and the National Football Conference (NFC) champion Minnesota Vikings played to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion for the 1974 season:
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