How Close Is London's Wembley To Getting An NFL Team?

Wembley Stadium is being talked about as a possible home if an NFL team comes to London in the near future.

How Close Is London's Wembley To Getting An NFL Team?
Getty Images / Oli Scarff

Los Angeles? London? Or both? 

The NFL owners' meeting ended Wednesday, a gathering of the league's top executives in one area to talk about a variety of upper-management topics. And while they all met in private, it seems talk of expansion or relocation of NFL teams was at least the talk of the media community outside the event.

Thursday, the BBC reported that the NFL could soon have a home at London's famous Wembley Stadium, home of England nationals futbol team, as in soccer. 

Currently, the NFL has three games scheduled there this year. The NFL held two games there for the first time last year — both sold out to whopping 80,000-plus crowds. The NFL first started sending teams over in 2007. 

The managing director of the NFL UK, Alistair Kirkwood, told the BBC: "Moving from one game to three games in a couple of years is a sign of real momentum and fan growth. We are going to have a look at seeing if we can grow from that over the next couple of years and see where we go from there."

But what about the England's national team and its relationship with Wembley? 

Well, things haven't been going too well lately. Recently, when the team played an international friendly against Norway, Wembley saw an attendance of just 40,181 — its lowest ever. Likely, more games or even an NFL franchise would mean England would need to play their 'home' games on the road. England's lease on the stadium goes until 2017. 

The BBC has also previously reported the NFL wants a franchise in London by 2021. 

A writer for USA Today says London does deserve an NFL team, but there are still questions left to answer, including how teams would handle arduous international travel, how the London-based team would affect divisional alignments, and, most importantly, if the small sample size of fans at NFL games the past few seasons is enough to prove there's a solid NFL fan base in the area. 

But the NFL could find itself in another location much sooner than 2021. 

Earlier this week, reports surfaced that the NFL wanted a team in Los Angeles within 12 - 24 months. L.A., despite being the second largest city in America, hasn't had an NFL franchise since the Rams and Raiders moved in 1995. 

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said after the meetings the logistics of an NFL team in Los Angeles were discussed, but made no mention of London. The NFL has already played one of its three scheduled games in London this year between the Raiders and Dolphins. That game was sold out.