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The three German cities preselected by the NFL will now move into the “candidate phase” for further discussion on proposals to host regular season games.
Last updated: 21/12/10 10:07
The NFL has confirmed that Dusseldorf, Frankfurt and Munich are the three German cities in talks to host regular season games.
Sky Sports exclusively revealed in August that seven cities, including Dusseldorf and Munich, had expressed interest in becoming hosts since 2022 after the league officially launched its search for a suitable partner in an effort to expand its international operation in the Continental Europe.
The three preselected cities have now been invited to move on to the “candidate phase” of the process, which will see them take part in further conversations about welcoming the NFL to Germany.
The Berlin Senate Department of Home Affairs and Sports informed Sky Sports earlier this year that the city has not pitched to become a host, while Hamburg’s Ministry of Interior and Sports admitted there is it was uncertainty about the city’s ability to meet the immediate requirements of the NFL.
“Regular season matches are a key part of continuing to develop our German fan base by creating more excitement for the sport and more connectivity with fans and communities,” said NFL head for Europe and the UK Brett Gosper.
“The strong interest we have received from German cities underlines what a fantastic opportunity this is for a host, ranging from significant economic benefits and global exposure to the possibility of becoming a hub for growing NFL fan engagement, community and of basic activities. “
NFL Europe & UK boss Brett Gosper says London can expect to host a minimum of three games per season in the future.
The multifunctional Merkur Spiel-Arena, currently home to the 2. Bundesliga team Fortuna Dusseldorf, has a capacity of 54,600 and previously served as the home stadium of the Rhein Fire, as well as hosting several Wladimir Klitschko matches.
The Waldstadion in Frankfurt can hold 51,500 fans for league football games as the home of Eintracht Frankfurt and 48,000 for American football events having been the home stadium for NFL Europe’s Frankfurt Galaxy as well as hosting three World Bowls and , since 2008, the German Bowl.
Bayern Munich’s Allianz Arena is meanwhile Germany’s second largest stadium with a 75,000-seat capacity just behind Borussia Dortmund’s 81,365-seat Westfalenstadion.
The NFL will play its 30th game in London since 2007, when the Jacksonville Jaguars take on the Miami Dolphins at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Sunday 17 October.
Earlier this year, the league reiterated its commitment to improving its international market by establishing that all 32 franchises will play internationally at least once every eight years from 2022 onwards. It has also been stated that there will be at least four international matches played each season starting in 2022.
Germany hosted five preseason games between 1990 and 1994 and were represented by the Hamburg Sea Devils, Fire, Berlin Thunder, Cologne Centurions and Galaxy in the former World League of American Football / NFL Europe / NFL Europe in various stages between 1991 and 2007, during which the five teams have an average of 21,690 fans in attendance.
New England Patriots goalkeeper Jakob Johnson is among the league’s most prominent German-born players, while Sebastian Vollmer has won the Super Bowl on two occasions while protecting Tom Brady at Foxborough. The likes of Moritz Boehringer, Christopher Ezeala, David Bada, Mark Nzeocha, Aaron Donkor and Moubarak Djeri have also appeared on the NFL rosters after passing the International Player Pathway Program, and Hero Kanu of Bavaria is one of the most coveted names in the college recruiting this year after his move to America.
Detroit Lions rookie wide receiver Amon-Ra St Brown and brother Equanimeous St. Brown, a Green Bay Packers receiver, can both speak fluent German thanks to their mother Miriam Brown, who is from Leverkusen.
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