The Case For The London Game

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  1. KC stands to benefit from this long-term.

In the end, this whole debate boils down to short-term sacrifice versus long-term gain, which is always a tough sell, particularly when we can’t see in the future exactly what the long-term gain is going to be.

However, it has been reported that the owners agreed last month that any franchise hoping to host a Super Bowl must agree to play a “home” game in London within five years of its bid. It would seem that KC is going to be first in line along with the Miami and Jacksonville for a Super Bowl after 2015. A KC Super Bowl and all the festivities it entails would be a boon not only for the franchise but the city during a space on the calendar when KC tourism isn’t quite at its highest.

Nov 2, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs cheerleaders entertain the crowd during the first half against the New York Jets at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs won 24-10. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Also, like I said, this sport is growing by leaps and bounds beyond America’s borders and the Kansas City Chiefs franchise will indeed benefit by becoming a popular team and brand in these new markets. Fighting for fans within the US is a zero sum game to convert the same pool of people. Abroad, everyone is up for grabs. Still, you’re probably wondering how you, a Kansas or Missouri-based Chiefs fan benefits from the internationalization of the KC brand. Well, aside from the visitors you’ll be getting to your city and tailgates from faraway lands, it’s really cool when the popularity of a team spurs fan organization chapters all over the world.

To give an example, one of my best Georgian friends is diehard fan of the English Premiere League soccer team Arsenal. He has gone on several trips across Europe to Arsenal games, always having a great time meeting up with the local Arsenal fan clubs. He’s even received discounts and free lodging at several of the locations – sometimes when no game was happening at all, simply Arsenal fans (Gunners, they are called), sticking together. At some point all the various Arsenal fan clubs of Eastern Europe assembled for an all expenses paid beerfest in Minsk where they partied like it was 1991.

We’re a long way off from that, but it would be great to have same sort of spread of Chiefs fandom. A world in which every city you visit has a Chiefs bar and a band of diehards to cheer and commiserate with would be a beautiful thing.