Tottenham Hotspur’s new stadium is designed to be friendly to the National Football League, and could eventually be the permanent home to a London-based NFL team. So it only makes sense that the NFL would also help contribute to the construction of said stadium, though there has been no confirmation that said contributions have come to fruition.
Until now! ESPN Tottenham beat writer Dan Kilpatrick broke the story today that Tottenham Hotspur received a £10m ($12.8m) payment last year from the NFL that will go to construction of Spurs’ new home in north London. And it looks like this payment is the first in a much larger overall contribution from the NFL before construction is complete. This payment was noted in Tottenham’s end of the year financial statement for 2016.
According to Kilpatrick, the NFL’s payments will go to the construction of NFL-specific stadium resources — things like the separate media, medical facilities, and dressing rooms needed for larger NFL squads. The artificial turf surface used for NFL games will also be partially funded by the NFL’s money, though Spurs are expected to foot part of that bill since they will use that surface for things like concerts and other events in order to preserve the integrity of the grass surface for football.
Spurs’ stadium price has ballooned up to £800m, about double what it was initially projected to cost, and the inclusion of NFL-specific facilities certainly adds to the price tag. Chairman Daniel Levy is no doubt hopeful that the benefits of collaborating with the NFL going forward will pay more dividends over the long term. Spurs are set to host up to two NFL games in their new stadium for the next ten years and if the NFL does indeed decide to expand to include a London-based franchise, the new “Naming Rights Stadium” is the most logical place for them to play.
If all goes according to plan, Spurs will dedicate their new stadium in time for the beginning of the 2018-19 season.