Saturday, October 22, 2011

Bears-Bucks-London-Wembley: Magic

Wembley Stadium is the site for NFL's London match between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Chicago Bears scheduled for Sunday, October 23. The game kickoffs at 6:00 p.m. UK time; Noon in Chicago. It was 25 years ago when the mighty Chicago Bears played in front of a sold-out Wembley Stadium in 1986. The Buccaneers played at Wembley in a 2009 game against the New England Patriots.

The game is promoted as part of a Pepsi Max International Series, which takes on a festive feel with a three-day series of events. "Unfortunately" for the Bears players, it has been described as a business trip by coach Lovie Smith who expects his team to knuckle down to business in preparation for a game that means a great deal to the 3-3 Bears and the 4-2 Buccaneers.

The Bears and the NFL have a good following in England and the European continent. Fans are coming from many different countries to see the game. Hopefully, Devin Hester will give them something special to see.

Wembley Stadium has a capacity for 90,000 fans with no obstructed views and offers much to amaze sports fans around the world. The seats are spread over three tiers: lower 34,303, middle 16,532 and upper 39,165. However, the feel for fans is one of a single bowl--"we are all in this together." Wembley was totally rebuilt and reopened in 2007. Stadium designers took special care in creating a sliding roof that helps insure an excellent pitch--computer models are used to map out air movement and sunlight. Much care is taken to provide the best field of play for the athletes.

The most recognizable feature of the stadium is 133 metre tall arch that sits above the north stand supporting much of the weight of the roof. The stadium also boasts close proximity to world-class transportation including train stations and lines that routinely transport 40,000 plus fans.

Sporting Chance Press is the publisher of Patrick McCaskey's Sports and Faith: Stories of the Devoted and the Devout and other fine books.