NFL Exec Makes Absolutely Wild Claim About Buccaneers-Seahawks Game in Germany

by Nick Geddes
(Photo by John McDonnell/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Allianz Arena — home of German soccer powerhouse Bayern Munich — will host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers against the Seattle Seahawks on November 13.

The Week 10 matchup will be the first NFL game to be played in Germany. Demand is high, as the stadium, which holds around 75,000 people, has already sold out its face-value tickets. The cheapest resale ticket on StubHub is currently $512. Kickoff is still nearly two months away, but the experiment to grow the sport appears to be working already.

Brett Gosper, Head of Europe & UK for the NFL, said this week that the league has a good chance to catch on big in Germany.

“It’s ubiquitous in Germany. When I visit I always get the feeling you talk to the taxi drivers about NFL – but here [London] not quite,” Gosper said, via the Daily Mail. “As a sport maybe it scratches an itch that other sports don’t in that market. Rugby is not a big game in that market – there is not another contact sport. There’s a lot of professional sports kicking around in England, from cricket, to rugby, to football, and so on. And NFL still finds its way in that competitive landscape.

“But in Germany, there just seems to be a wider possibility to come in and occupy a space that maybe is not occupied by someone else.”

The NFL will have played its 33rd game in London by the time the Buccaneers and Seahawks break ground in Germany. The league started playing games overseas in 2007, initially taking place at Wembley Stadium. Games are now played at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, which opened in 2019.

Fans in Germany Ready for Buccaneers-Seahawks

Gosper talked about the demand for the game, pointing out the outrageous amount of people who tried to buy tickets.

“There is high demand for these games in Europe, particularly in Germany given the novelty factor,” Gosper said. “There were 800,000 people queuing for one game of football. Ticketmaster said they never seen anything like it. They extrapolated that in demand terms our analytics say you could have sold three million tickets – basically 500,000 more than a rugby World Cup! It’s a big, big, big demand.”

Gosper was asked if the NFL would entertain playing in another European cathedral such as Santiago Bernabéu Stadium or Spotify Camp Nou in Spain. The Bernabéu is home to the defending European soccer champions, Real Madrid. Camp Nou is the home of their rival, FC Barcelona.

“There’s no current plans for that,’ Gosper said. “But the NFL talk to a lot of stadia around Europe, whether it be for potential preseason games – it’s good to know who would be ready to take a game and who would be interested under what terms.

“We keep a constant dialogue with a number of stadia just to keep that understanding. Whether it be in France, Spain, other markets, and so on. It’s never out of the question to go to a place like Spain or France as well. At this point obviously, we haven’t gotten the inventory, but there may well be in the future.”