Tottenham have announced a deal with the National Football League that will see them host fixtures in their new stadium.
The Premier League club are due to move into a new home in 2018 and will now host regular-season NFL games on an artificial surface which will be installed under the regular grass pitch used by Spurs.
Tottenham, who will relocate for a season whilst the work is completed, have completed a 10-year deal with the NFL that will see them host a minimum of two games a year – with chairman Daniel Levy pleased with what the agreement will mean to the surrounding area.
“We have an opportunity now to deliver one of the most unique sports, leisure and entertainment venues in the world, bringing together the EPL (Premier League) and NFL for the first time,” he said.
“The socio-economic benefits this will bring to the area will be immense and demonstrates our commitment to the regeneration of this priority borough in London.”
Wembley has already hosted 11 NFL fixtures, with three more scheduled for later in 2015, with the sport proving popular in Britain with 10 crowds of over 80,000 already recorded.
Tottenham, who could yet spend the year away from their ground at Wembley, will be hoping to tap into that popularity when they begin hosting matches from 2018 onwards.
Both Spurs and a potential London-based NFL franchise were unsuccessful in bids to take tenancy of the Olympic Stadium – soon to become the new home of West Ham – but Mayor of London Boris Johnson believes more fixtures in the capital could lead to a franchise following soon.
“Anyone who has seen American Football at Wembley Stadium cannot fail to have been thrilled by the spectacle,” he said.
“The wise heads that run the NFL have clearly not missed the fact that Londoners are going absolutely gangbusters for gridiron.
“We are already working very closely with the NFL, including on plans to get more Londoners involved in the sport, and we believe that building on the success of NFL at Wembley by staging more games in an area of the city that has been earmarked for a massive programme of economic regeneration and investment makes perfect sense.
“Touchdowns in Tottenham can only add to our reputation as a global sporting powerhouse, and help us take another step towards our goal of having a permanent NFL franchise here in London.”
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