The NFL's second visit to Wembley is only three weeks away now and, if you're wishing that you'd managed to get tickets when they first emerged in the spring, then you'll be very pleased to know that tickets at all price levels are available to the general public right now. The organisers are working with an increased capacity of around 85,000 and this year's teams, the New Orleans Saints and the San Diego Chargers, are using less of their allocations than the East Coast teams from 2007. Between now and the game on October 26th up to 5,000 tickets will gradually be offered for UK based fans to purchase. When Londonist checked this afternoon seats could be purchased for as little as £30 (end zone obstructed view seats) and as much as £100 (seats smack on the halfway line about forty rows back from the front). You can also still go for the Club Wembley hospitality experience for £125-£145.
Away from the big match itself, Alistair Kirkwood, Managing Director of NFL UK, promised Channel Five viewers last Monday night that, following on from London's successful rookie hosting of the NFL, this second year will see a celebration of American football, and nominated home team the Saints in particular, on a grander scale. On the eve of the game the O2 will host a free New Orleans festival night, there'll be a pre-game tailgate party with a Mardi Gras theme for around 20,000 fans and the entertainment inside the stadium itself will be enhanced, which will please the NFL team owners and their Commissioner, many of whom, as last year, will be in town for a few days before the event. The teams themselves are said to want to spend more time here rather than fly more or less straight in and out as last year. Kirkwood is acutely aware nevertheless of one important ingredient that hampered the spectacle last year, but is beyond even the mighty NFL's powers:
I'm trying to get the nerve up to do a Namath-like guarantee of no rain!
Picture via Gaspa's Flickr stream.
He can, though, reveal to the world NFL UK's new website, which he says they've been working on "since the day after the last Wembley game." It will be completely different from any other NFL site and will have a particular aim of making the game easier to understand for new viewers as well as providing more opportunities for user interaction including the hosting of blogs which other fans can read and rate. You can see a preview of the site's new front page here.