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    Tottenham Hotspur Stadium is…NFL Heaven!

    Tottenham Hotspur Stadium is…NFL Heaven!

    Tottenham Hotspur Stadium is…NFL Heaven!

    With four NFL International games to choose from this year, I thought I’d try and get tickets for the Bucs v Panthers game at the new Tottenham Stadium (Tampa have been my team since 1983). Spurs chairman Daniel Levy must be a big NFL fan, as I understand he approached the League with the idea of incorporating a custom-built Football field within the “Soccer” stadium. An agreement was struck to play two games there each season for the next ten years and the construction got under way.

    The gridiron sits under the soccer pitch which rolls away under the impressive South Stand when the NFL are in town. The surface is state of the art artificial grass, which, mindful that the games are played in the autumn is a good thing (no games called off due to adverse British weather!) Located in North London, for anyone who lives north of Watford, it’s a bit of a trek to get there, but heh! The journey is part of the experience, it makes it more of a special event. For me and my son it was two trains to get to Kings Cross and then a tube to Tottenham Hale. From there it was a brisk twenty-minute walk to the stadium.

    As you navigate through the local residential areas there are helpful NFL staffers to point you in the right direction and then as you turn a corner past a block of flats the Stadium rises up in front of you  looking like a futuristic vessel that has landed from outer space, ready to transport you to Planet NFL.

    In the adjacent streets, NFL banners adorn the lamp posts and buildings, and those kind gentlemen who managed to acquire lots of spare tickets are on hand to help if you “need a ticket mate?” To enter the stadium, you need to walk around the perimeter and look for the signs indicating the entry point for your block. Make your way up the stairs and you’ll be directed to pass your ticket through the turnstile reader, once through you’ll meet the “bag check” operatives, don’t try and take any of your own food and drink in, it’ll be confiscated (when you get your tickets you also get a guide to unacceptable items for bringing in to the event) and any bags need to be see-through and within certain dimensions. You might as well buy one of the clear NFL bags in advance, the only cost £5.00.

    As you move to the concourse area behind the seats you have a wide choice of refreshment outlets to visit, but be aware that “stadium prices” apply, there are also stations where you can secure a gameday programme. An important point to note is that the venue is cash free, so don’t forget your bankcard or your pin number.

    As you take your seat you can’t help but be impressed with the layout, tiered sections with good sized walkways between them, making it easy to move around. We were in row seventeen in one of the endzone sections, we had a great view and due to the incline, it felt like we were almost on the pitch! The capacity for NFL games is around 62,000 but the acoustics make it sound like there are more people in than that. The sound system is crystal clear and graphics and images pulse around the front of the stands to compliment the huge “diamond screens” positioned in the upper corners. In game breaks they show instant replays and close ups of side-line presenters interviewing attending celebrities and pundits.

    All in all, watching the NFL at Tottenham is well worth the trip. If you’re travelling some distance to get there, make sure to factor in some extra time in case of travel delays. Remember that the journey home will be quicker if your team wins, but longer of course if your team happens to lose, understandably therefore, it seemed to take ages for me to get home!

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