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The long-awaited first NFL match at Tottenham’s brand new state-of-the-art stadium in north London has finally arrived. This Sunday, the Chicago Bears take on the Oakland Raiders (6 p.m. BST/1 p.m. ET) on a field that was years in the making and ran… erm… a bit behind schedule, as Spurs fans can attest.
So, after all that, the change from Premier League football pitch to one suited for American gridiron football will happen lickity-split with the flip of a switch, right?
Well, not quite. It’s a bit of a production and quite a remarkable one at that. Ahead of the game, Spurs shared a time-lapse video that shows it’s both labour intensive and incredibly impressive.
But the wonders of this pitch aren’t confined to the playing surface. The whole stadium is truly on the cutting edge of everything that modern technology, creature comforts and luxury have to offer both the professional athlete and the everyday spectator, as this video tour shows.
Sadly for the Bears and the Raiders, neither team will have the chance to score the first touchdown at this revolutionary new ground, as Bayern Munich beat them both to the punch in their 7-2 Champions League thrashing of Spurs in midweek!
Tottenham striker Harry Kane told ESPN that he wants to play in the NFL one day, and is clearly a superfan of New England Patriots QB Tom Brady, so that got us thinking… which players have shown they could make it in the NFL?
Lionel Messi’s Cirque de Soleil
Barcelona and Argentina legend Lionel Messi’s life story has been taken to the stage via Cirque du Soleil and it’s quite a show.
Cirque du Soleil, the live performance company that performs around the world, has previously based shows on musical acts such as The Beatles, Michael Jackson and Argentine rock group Soda Stereo, but never before on a football player. And this week we’ve had a sneak preview of what’s on offer.
The spectacle by the Montreal-based company will open in Barcelona on October, then travel the globe in 2020.
Their productions usually feature daring high-wire and acrobatic stunts, as well as extravagant costumes and musical performances, but there’s no word yet on whether his lifelong rival Cristiano Ronaldo appears as the pantomime villain.
Zlatan buys himself a car
LA Galaxy striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrated his 38th birthday a few days ago. And it seems that he’s bought himself a present.
“Zlatan doesn’t buy presents; presents buy Zlatan” or something equally glib…
Still, the car looks happy with its new owner.
FC Tokyo wish the Rugby World Cup would end now
Japan may be enjoying hosting the 2019 Rugby World Cup, but FC Tokyo have plenty of reasons to lament the arrival of the tournament.
The Gasmen have never won the J.League title but have led the 18-team standings since April. A recent dip in form however could see Tokyo slip off the summit with six games to go should second-placed Kashima Antlers, Japan’s most successful club with eight league championships avoid defeat against Cerezo Osaka on Sunday.
One reason for Tokyo’s struggles is the fact the team has been forced to vacate their home since August. Ajinomoto Stadium is playing host to eight World Cup games, which means that Tokyo are in the middle of eight successive league games on the road.
The first five have yielded just five points with Saturday’s defeat especially painful. On the same day that England defeated Argentina at the Ajinomoto (known as Tokyo Stadium during the World Cup) FC Tokyo were four minutes away from a vital win at Sagan Tosu, but the relegation-threatened hosts not only equalised, they took all three points with a 96th minute goal from Takashi Kanai.
Yokohama F. Marinos also increased the pressure on the leaders. Under former Australia national team coach Ange Postecoglou, the three-time champions have collected 13 points from a possible 15 and are just a point behind Tokyo in third.
The tournament can’t end soon enough for the capital club.
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