MADRID - The NFL says Real Madrid’s stadium in Spain will be the next European destination to host a regular season game.
The first-ever regular season game in Spain will be played at Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, home to Real Madrid CF.
"We could not be more excited to bring the best of the NFL, the best of our teams and star players to the more than 13 million passionate fans in Spain and partner with one of the greatest global soccer clubs in Real Madrid in a truly world class and innovative stadium," said Peter O'Reilly, the NFL's head of international affairs.
The NFL hasn’t announced yet which teams will play in Madrid, but O'Reilly said the host team would likely be an AFC team because teams in that conference will have an extra home game that season.
"There’s not a lack of interest for teams playing in Madrid with our partner Real Madrid," O'Reilly said.
The NFL has played 50 international regular season games, including in London, Munich, Frankfurt, Mexico City and Toronto.
In 2024, the NFL will have three games in London — including a home game for the Jacksonville Jaguars — along with one in Germany and the first game ever in São Paulo, Brazil.
The league has previously targeted Spain and France as the next European destinations as it aggressively tries to expand its international footprint.
NFL logo (Photo by Ryan Kang/Getty Images)
"I would like to express our deepest gratitude to you and to let you know that it is a great honor for Real Madrid to host this international event with the NFL over the next few years in our stadium," said Emilio Butragueno, Madrid’s director of institutional relations. "For us, you are a model of management and a great traveling companion with whom to share our dreams."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.