London Calling for the Vikings

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

The news dropped Thursday morning that the Minnesota Vikings are a designated team to play a regular-season game at London’s Tottenham Hotspur Stadium as part of the 2024 International Games. London is calling for the Vikings for the fifth time in their history.

London Calling for the Vikings

The date and opponents for the Vikings will be confirmed later — probably in May — but it is confirmed that the Vikings will be the home team, taking one of the nine home games away from U.S. Bank Stadium. It will be the fourth time Minnesota competes in the international series, and the Vikings also played an exhibition game against the St Louis Cardinals at Wembley Stadium in 1983.

London Calling for
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota has an impeccable record in London, winning all five games they have played on British soil. As well as beating the Cardinals in 1983, they won regular season games against the Pittsburgh Steelers (2013), Cleveland Browns (2017), and New Orleans Saints (2022). For those who are superstitious, the last two visits to London coincided with the Vikings claiming the division title.

International Growth

The NFL continues to grow the game internationally and goes from strength to strength. There will be five international games this season, with the Jacksonville Jaguars making their annual trip to London and playing at Wembley Stadium. The Viking’s divisional rivals, the Chicago Bears, will also host a game at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. The Carolina Panthers have been announced as the team traveling to Munich, Germany, to host a game. A fifth 2024 International Game has been announced for São Paulo, Brazil, but no teams have been announced for what will be the first NFL game in South America.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

In December 2021, the Vikings were awarded one of the international home marketing initiatives for the UK. All four teams playing in the UK and Germany are part of that program, which awards international marketing rights to NFL teams in countries beyond the U.S. The Bears, Vikings, and Jaguars have international marketing rights in the U.K. The Panthers are among the teams with marketing rights in Germany.

It should be no surprise that these teams are playing, with the Vikings making the trip for the second time in three years. Semi-regular trips should probably be expected until the NFL reaches the point where every team plays one international game a year, which is what I believe is the end goal for this initiative and the purpose of introducing the 17th game.

For the ever-growing Vikings fanbase in the UK (and Europe), this news is a cause for excitement as they see their heroes up close once again.