History tells us that the Vikings first raided England in 793 when they landed their longboats on the shores of Lindisfarne, taking the monastery and butchering the monks. 1,217 years later, the Vikings are ready to land on English shores again. But this time they won’t be bringing swords, they’ll be bringing footballs. And protective cups. And they won’t be leaving with treasure and heads, only wins (hopefully).
Actually I might be getting ahead of myself a little bit here. Nothing’s finalized yet as regards this second Viking invasion of England. So far all we have are tentative plans for the Vikings – that’s the Minnesota Vikings, in case you’re not keeping up – to play two home games in the next four years at London’s Wembley Stadium.
The NFL and Vikings are both reportedly very keen to make this happen. It makes sense for the Vikings because, with the new stadium construction, they’ll have to play away from their real home for up to two years anyway. A couple home games at Wembley, which seats 86,000 for American football, means two fewer home games at temporary residence TCF Bank Stadium, which after upgrades will still be able to accommodate less than 60,000.
Of course the state-side fans might gripe about losing a couple of home games, but if there’s money to be made elsewhere, the Vikings won’t hesitate to follow it (sorry fans). It seems what we have here is a match made in heaven. The NFL wants to make more inroads in the European market, and the Vikings want to make back some of the revenue they’ll be losing by temporarily moving into a much smaller venue. So it seems inevitable that, for awhile at least, the Vikings will become England’s team.
Don’t worry English pals. We’re not coming for your gold and women this time. We just want your cash. And to take pictures of ourselves in front of Big Ben.