The first NFL game to be staged at Tottenham’s new stadium got the seal of approval from those involved in the Oakland Raiders’ win over the Chicago Bears.
A crowd of 60,463 witnessed Oakland, the designated home team, survive a Bears comeback in London to clinch a thrilling 24-21 victory that left both teams at 3-2 heading into their Week 6 byes.
It was the 25th regular-season game to take place in London and the first at Premier League side Spurs’ home, which was custom built with a retractable pitch and bespoke locker rooms for the NFL.
Despite seeing his team beaten, Bears head coach Matt Nagy was effusive in his praise of the stadium, which cost a reported £850million.
“[It is] beautiful, absolutely gorgeous,” he said at a post-game news conference.
“You walk in here and you just see it, it’s state of the art, it’s top notch.
Official Attendance: 60,463!
— NFL UK (@NFLUK) October 6, 2019
“You talk about doing things the right way – I mean, it blows you away.
“It’s phenomenal, absolutely phenomenal.”
The Raiders played two previous games at Wembley in 2014 and 2018, losing both times, and their players are likely to have fonder memories of Spurs’ abode.
Quarterback Derek Carr revealed the team had been mightily impressed by a trip to the stadium earlier in the week to watch Spurs’ 7-2 Champions League loss to Bayern Munich.
“It is first class,” Carr added.
“We had the opportunity to sit up in the chairman’s box for the soccer match.
— Derek Carr (@derekcarrqb) October 6, 2019
“Everything was just so first class, every little detail, and every single room you go in is unbelievable.
“This is definitely if not the, one of the best stadiums I’ve ever been in my life.”
The grass pitch at Wembley has caused issues for NFL players when it rains heavily, and the surface was barren in areas last October when the Philadelphia Eagles beat the Jacksonville Jaguars a day before Manchester City faced Spurs at Tottenham’s temporary home.
Oakland’s offensive tackle Kolton Miller, who played at Wembley in 2018, was far happier with the artificial pitch Sunday’s game took place on, even if the crowd was largely made up of Bears fans at a Raiders ‘home’ game.
“I liked the turf field – you could really get your footing,” he told Omnisport.
“The crowd, I thought was going to be more Raiders fans, but I think it felt more like an away game with the noise. But we didn’t let that affect us.”