Tottenham keen to host NFL-Premier League double-header

September 7, 2016

Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy wants to stage a Premier League-NFL double-header at the new White Hart Lane.

Spurs hope to have completed and be moved into the 61,000-seat ground for the start of the 2018-19 Premier League campaign. The plan host a minimum of two NFL games per year over a 10-year period has been known for a while but the double-header idea is a new concept put forward by Levy and backed by those across the Atlantic.

With a retractable pitch and more NFL-specific changing facilities planned for the new White Hart Lane, a double-header could be possibility logistically. However both parties accept it would not be a straightforward operation.

Daniel Levy wants to stage a Premier League-NFL double-header at the new White Hart Lane

Spurs are lining up the new stadium as a possible host for a London NFL franchise

Spurs revealed in 2015 they plan to host at least two NFL games a year once the stadium opens

Levy is keen on the idea but would want to see Spurs bedded in first, telling the Evening Standard: ‘I don’t think it’s something we’d want to try in our first game, but that is certainly realistic.

‘How exciting: the idea of having the two biggest leagues in the world from a television perspective – fantastic – play on the same day.’

Mark Waller, NFL executive vice-president of international, added: ‘One of the idle thoughts we have at the moment is whether you would really be able to play an NFL fixture and a Premier League game on the same day as a double header.

‘It wouldn’t be absolutely out of the question. I don’t think you’d want to do it on a regular basis, but on a unique feature, it might be a really interesting idea.’

With a retractable pitch planned, the possibility of a double-header is a logistical possibility 

Construction is currently underway on the new ground with the move in planned for 2018

Levy is pursuing the NFL tie-up as he knows it is key in funding the £750million new stadium.

The decision to include NFL-specific facilities also puts Tottenham in a strong position to host an eventual NFL London franchise.

Wembley currently hosts three NFL matches per year, with Jacksonville Jaguars – the favourites to make a permanent move to the UK – committed to playing one game annually at the national stadium until 2020.

It is thought the NFL would prefer to use a UK stadium better suited to American football than Wembley

The Spurs chairman has ensured the newly built stadium fits the bill for hosting NFL matches

Despite Wembley previously holding a monopoly on hosting the NFL International Series is thought the NFL would prefer a stadium more suited to gridiron fans.

Levy told ESPN of his plans to make the new stadium as suitable for American football as possible in a bid to make Tottenham the NFL’s preferred destination.

‘We worked together,’ the Spurs chairman said, ‘because it needed to be viewed as a combined joint soccer and NFL stadium.

The Jaugars play at Wembley again this year and are favourites to make the move to UK

Sportsmail's Allen Hurns scores the winning touchdown for the Jags at Wembley in 2015

‘In fact, the way we designed the whole experience is one side of the stadium is a dedicated soccer entrance and the other side is a dedicated NFL entrance.

‘As we sat down and we went through all the operations, we worked out, “What does the NFL need? What does football need?” We had a checklist of all the various things we wanted to achieve.’

‘If it ever got to a stage where the NFL decided it wanted to have a permanent team in London, this stadium could literally be, whatever the team was, it would be their stadium as opposed to an NFL team feeling they’re renting Tottenham’s stadium.’

SOURCE: dailymail.co.uk

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