Los Angeles Chargers owner Dean Spanos dismisses reports of move to London
"There have been no discussions of any kind between the NFL and the Chargers regarding moving to London," NFL say in statement
Last Updated: 05/11/19 10:45pm
Los Angeles Chargers owner Dean Spanos has dismissed reports that the franchise is open to moving to London.
The Athletic reported that London is pushing for a permanent team and that the Chargers "would listen" if NFL approached them about such a move, but Sky Sports News understood the team was committed to moving to a new stadium in California next year.
After another successful International Series this season, with four games held between the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and Wembley Stadium, speculation has continued to mount about a potential permanent London NFL franchise.
But the Chargers are adamant that Los Angeles will be its home for the foreseeable future.
"It's total f****** bull****, OK? We're not going to London. We're not going anywhere," Chargers owner Spanos said.
"We're playing in Los Angeles. This is our home. This is where I'm planning to be for a long f****** time. Period."
This is the 13th year of competitive NFL games in London, and 31 of 32 franchises have made it over, with the Green Bay Packers the one exception.
While both games in Tottenham drew at least 60,000 fans and Wembley continued to reach 80,000-plus due to the avid British support, the Chargers are playing in a stadium that seats 27,000 and have failed to gather support since their move from San Diego at the start of the 2017 season.
With concerns about the fan attendance in L.A. and most home games being packed out with opposing fans, The Athletic's Vincent Bonsignore revealed there is interest from both the league and the Chargers about a potential move to the UK.
But the NFL said in a statement: "There is no substance whatsoever to this report.
"No consideration has been given to the Chargers playing anywhere other than Los Angeles at the new stadium in Hollywood Park next season and beyond.
"There have been no discussions of any kind between the NFL and the Chargers regarding moving to London. Both our office and the Chargers are entirely focused on the success of the team in Los Angeles."
Bonsignore earlier wrote: "The Athletic has learned through NFL sources that the possibility of the Chargers moving to London has been broached among league personnel.
"The Athletic also has learned that, while the team is fully committed to Los Angeles where it will move into the new $4.5 billion stadium with the Rams next year, the Chargers would at least listen if the NFL approached them about London as a possible option.
"Finally, The Athletic has learned that NFL owners are concerned enough about the Chargers' situation in L.A., where a crowded sports market and the presence of the more established Rams has resulted in a tepid embracement of the Chargers, that they would provide the necessary support for a relocation to London if the Chargers pursue it."
The Chargers are scheduled to move into the 70,240-capacity SoFi Stadum in Inglewood, California at the start of next season. However, they will continue to compete for the LA market with the Rams, who will also play their home games at SoFi.