An NFL official in Mexico has told AS that the country will hold five regular season games, one per season, from 2017 or 2018. Mexico is now financially in conditions to return to host official NFL games and is set to stage five encounters during the regular season.
NFL Mexico Director Arturo Olivé told AS, “We’re taking steps in the right direction so that eventually, this platform (of sponsors) which we have reconstructed will enable us to talk directly to the NFL in New York about the possibility of staging games in Mexico”.
Diario AS understands that organizational costs to stage NFL games in Mexico has been set at 15 million dollars, a figure which the country can cover due to the growth of sponsorship deals during the past few years.
Olivé explained that in 2008, when he took over the reins of NFL México, the league had just three sponsors, two of which were nearing the end of their contract. Today, that number has risen to 20 companies who endorse the league – a situation which makes it viable for Mexico to cover the 15 million dollar annual organizational costs as recoup that outlay through promotional activities and the sale of broadcasting rights.
Olivé added that it was improbable that the Azteca stadium or Olímpico Universitario de la UNAM would be used to stage NFL games. Nevertheless the NFL has already approved Mexico to hold games in the country, “It will be for five games, not three as originally proposed”, he confirmed.
Following the reaction to Arturo Olivé's declarations to Diario AS, the NFL spokesman Mike Signora responded with the following statement:
"We are pleased with the growth in fan demand and the increased partner support we have enjoyed in recent years. With this in mind, we are actively assessing the opportunity to play games in Mexico. We have visited several stadiums in recent months, and are analyzing what needs to be done to bring games to Mexico. It is premature to comment specifically as to when this will happen, let alone how many, if any, games might be played."