The NFL is set to break new ground as it announces the Philadelphia Eagles will play the opening game of the 2024 regular season in São Paulo, Brazil. This marks the first time an NFL regular season game will be played in South America, setting the stage in the vibrant city of São Paulo at the Corinthians Arena, a stadium with a rich history of hosting major sports events including the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games.
Adding to the uniqueness of the event, the game is scheduled for Friday night, September 6, making it the first NFL game to be played on a Friday night of opening weekend in over half a century. The last such occurrence was back in 1970, a testament to the league’s innovative approach to this year’s schedule. The opponent for the Eagles, along with the exact kickoff time, remains under wraps, with details expected to be released with the full 2024 NFL schedule this spring.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell highlighted the significance of this game as a milestone in the NFL’s international expansion efforts. “Playing on Friday night of Week 1 is a unique way to highlight our international growth and ambitions,” Goodell stated, underlining the league’s commitment to bringing American football to a global audience.
Jeffrey Lurie, chairman and CEO of the Philadelphia Eagles, expressed the team’s honour in participating in this groundbreaking game. “We embrace the opportunity to grow our fanbase around the world and bring Eagles football to the 38 million sports fans in Brazil,” Lurie said, recognising Brazil’s rich cultural diversity and the team’s excitement about sharing their game with new audiences.
The city of São Paulo, known for its cultural vibrancy and sports enthusiasm, is equally excited about hosting the game. Mayor Ricardo Nunes and São Paulo Turismo president Gustavo Pires spoke about the economic impact and the honor of welcoming the Eagles to their city, expecting the event to enhance São Paulo’s global reputation as a destination for premier sports and entertainment.
This game is part of the 2024 NFL International Games series, which will also see matches played in London at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and Wembley Stadium, and in Munich, Germany, at the Allianz Arena. The NFL’s international footprint continues to expand, with the league having played games in five out of the seven continents around the world.
The announcement also comes on the heels of the NFL clubs’ decision to increase the number of league-operated international games to up to eight per season starting in 2025, underscoring the NFL’s dedication to globalizing the sport of American football.
As the 2024 NFL season approaches, fans worldwide are eagerly anticipating this historic kickoff in Brazil, marking a new chapter in the NFL’s international journey and the ongoing effort to bring the excitement of American football to every corner of the globe.