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Jaguars Set to Make the Jump to London Full Time? Owner Shad Khan in Talks to Buy Wembley Stadium

Jaguars owner Shad Khan is reportedly in talks to buy Wembley Stadium, England’s preeminent “football” field, according to Jonathan Prynn of The Evening Standard.

The report claims that Khan has agreed to pay more than 500 million pounds ($700 million dollars) tor the stadium, which is known as the home of English soccer and also hosts NFL games on an annual basis. The report indicates that Khan’s ownership would result in more American football games being played at Wembley, and possibly even an NFL franchise in London. Khan has repeatedly shot down talk that he wants to move the Jaguars to London, but talk persists that an NFL team could eventually be located there.

One of the NFL teams that plays annually in London is the Jags but Khan is trying to frame the move to buy Wembley not as an attempt to move his franchise to London but to strengthen the standing of his franchise overall. Khan released the following statement about the purchase: “The Jaguars have played regular season home games at Wembley Stadium in each of the past five NFL seasons and will continue to do so at least through the 2020 season,” Khan said in a statement. “The games the Jaguars play at Wembley are essential to the financial stability of the Jaguars in Jacksonville, which is one of the smallest markets in the NFL. If my ownership interests were to include Wembley Stadium, it would protect the Jaguars’ position in London at a time when other NFL teams are understandably becoming more interested in this great city. And the stronger the Jaguars are in London, the more stable and promising the Jaguars’ future will be in Jacksonville.”

However strong Khan’s stated commitment is to Jacksonville-and, to his credit, he has poured a lot of money into improving the stadium and shoring up the franchise-Jaguar fans have to be viewing the news about Wembley wthl a strong sense of unease. With this purchase, Khan has clearly staked his claim to London ahead of the other 31 NFL teams and it seems inevitable that the Jaguars will increase their presence there-if one game a year there is so profitable, how about two? Or four? Or basing your operations there permanently.

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