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SBD Global/August 1, 2013/Franchises

NFL San Francisco 49ers Co-Chair Says NFL Franchise Has Potential In London

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49ers co-chair says NFL franchise in London "could work."
NFL San Francisco 49ers Co-Chair John York has said that "an NFL franchise could work in London," according to Sian Cowper of SPORTS MOLE. The Super Bowl runners-up "are one of four teams due to play at Wembley Stadium this year, as they face the Jacksonville Jaguars in October." York told Sky Sports News, "Clearly the number of [London] fans has grown. The media attention has grown and we've had no trouble selling out the tickets. ... I don't know there is any set timetable and there are complex issues with the logistics of travel, but we're trying to take care of those things as they come along and not go too fast, but I believe the potential is there to have a franchise in London." The Minnesota Vikings and Pittsburgh Steelers "will also play in London in September" (SPORTS MOLE, 7/31). NBC's Joe Prince-Wright wrote York "was asked about the recent influx of American owners in the Premier League and if San Francisco would ever consider buying an EPL team." York: "I don't know that we would not." York said that "no deals have been initiated." York said, "We have not done so thus far, but it could be an interesting opportunity." York "did go on to explain that owning a Premier League franchise is an extremely viable opportunity" and did not rule it out. York: "I think it depends on the individuals and the opportunities that exist. I'm sure that there will be other people [NFL owners] interested in the Premier League franchises if they are ever available. There are tremendous opportunities, it is a great sport and has a broader attention than American Football does outside of the United States" (NBC, 7/31).
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