It's a mark of how well-established the annual NFL fixture at Wembley in late October has become that it seems strange to be announcing that only later today, six weeks in advance of an expected 80,000 attendance, are tickets going on general sale to those who had not pre-registered. In past years almost everything was sold out within minutes of being available in the early spring, so if you've always fancied the idea of going, but never been able to commit to the game so far in advance, this year could offer an ideal opportunity to snap up a seat.
NFL UK Managing Director Alistair Kirkwood explained “Because of the lateness in confirming this year’s Wembley game due to the ongoing labour negotiations in the US we are working to a very different timescale for ticket sales this year. But it gives us the opportunity to tie in the sale of tickets to the general public with the launch of the season and all the thrills and drama of opening weekend.” Tickets for the October 23rd clash at Wembley between the Chicago Bears and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be available starting at 7:30 PM BST this evening, scheduled to fall during half time of live television broadcasts of today's opening games in the US.
The Glazer family's other team will be back in London from Florida only two years after falling to the New England Patriots in the same stadium while the Chicago Bears hold a special place in the hearts of many UK fans thanks to their displays when the game first took off here 25 years ago. Their chairman, Michael McCaskey, commented: “To return to London to play an NFL game – this is going to be fun. I remember how enthusiastic the fans were in 1986 when we played in Wembley Stadium. We are looking forward to facing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and playing in person before our terrific fans in the UK and Europe.”