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Steelers Add Germany to Future International Game Wish List

The Pittsburgh Steelers hope to play internationally in all of their designated marketing locations at some point in the future.

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ORLANDO, Fla. — While the Pittsburgh Steelers do not expect to have an international game in 2024, they expect to have one soon. And with global marketing rights in Mexico, the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, and Germany, the Steelers hope to play games in all of those markets in the future.

“We’d love to play a game in all of those places,” Rooney said. “Not sure how quickly that can happen. It will be a while before we get to all of them. But yeah, we’d love to play in the markets where we have that opportunity.” 

For the second straight year, the NFL will not play a game in Mexico due to renovations at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City. The league hopes to return to that venue in 2025, and the Steelers could very well be a part of that return.

The Steelers have international agreements in Mexico and Ireland but have not yet hosted an international game under the new league rules that require a team to do so—and give up a home game—once every eight years. The Steelers have played one regular-season game internationally, losing 34-27 to the Minnesota Vikings at Wembley Stadium in London in 2013.

With the Steelers not playing an international game in 2024, they look to be one of the favorites to play in Mexico in 2025. The Steelers have also expressed a desire to play a game in Ireland at some point in the future, though that could be a preseason game, as they have played in the past.

Nowadays, games are being played in more markets than ever before. The NFL announced in December its intention to play its first game anywhere in the Southern Hemisphere in Brazil in 2024. The game will be played in São Paulo, Brazil, at Arena Corinthians, the home of the soccer club SC Corinthians. The game will be played on Friday, Sept. 6, on the second day of the 2024 NFL season. The partially enclosed stadium seats 49,205, though it was expanded to over 68,000 during the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The stadium also hosted the 2016 Summer Olympics and the 2019 Copa América.

Brazil is considered an important potential future market for the NFL, with 38 million fans, according to NFL metrics, which makes it the second-largest international audience, behind Mexico.

Beyond Brazil, the NFL will have games in London, England and Munich, Germany in 2024. The Chicago Bears, Minnesota Vikings and Jacksonville Jaguars will host games in London and the Carolina Panthers will host the game in Munich.

In seems easy to reason the Steelers will play internationally in sometime in the future, likely in Mexico first.

Alan Saunders contributed to reporting from Orlando.