AMERICAN Football fans have welcomed news that the Principality Stadium has been suggested as a potential venue for NFL games.
NFL UK says that if they were to take the sport outside of London, Cardiff would be an ideal host.
Speaking to BBC Sport Wales, Alistair Kirkwood, NFL UK managing director, said: “There’s not a lot of stadia in the UK that suit our sport but the Principality Stadium works perfectly.”
Fans of the sport are excited about the possibility, saying that it would make the games more accessible for people in Wales and it could bring more tourism in the city.
Elizabeth Morgan, who lives in Treorchy in the Rhondda, said: “My 11-year-old son is an NFL fan but because we are in Wales we haven’t had the opportunity to travel to England to watch a game. We have the facilities for it and bringing visitors also means a boost for the Welsh economy,” she added.
NFL games have been played at Wembley Stadium since 2007 and Twickenham hosted their first game in 2015.
Ollie Rees, 22, said: “I think that bringing the NFL to Cardiff would be a fantastic idea. American football games provide a completely different atmosphere to any other sport I have watched – it’s actually friendly.
“Some UK fans don’t necessarily know much about it or have a specific team that they support, but they come to watch the sport and get enthralled in the party atmosphere. It’s all the over-exaggerated fun of games from America without having to hop on a plane.”
Cecily Donnelly, 24, is a student at Swansea University and says that the sport is popular at the Students’ Unions in South Wales and there are lots of people who would want to watch the games.
She said: “I think they should have NFL games in Cardiff because it’s not only a popular sport in Wales but it’s very popular in Cardiff and Swansea University Unions. There’s a great atmosphere at the games and they really involve their fans. I think they should bring this to Cardiff.”
However, James Lloyd, the Club Treasurer for the Cardiff University Cobras, said that one problem of hosting the games at the Principality stadium is that the changing rooms cannot accommodate the teams.
He said: “I have spoken to a number of people about the NFL at the Principality and by the sound of it the stadium ticks a lot of boxes. But, the problem they have is the size of the changing rooms – they cannot accommodate the entire American football teams and staff.”
NFL is growing in popularity in Wales and the 2017 Super Bowl LI takes place this week. There will be viewing parties throughout the city where fans can watch the games.