The Kansas City Chiefs of Patrick Mahomes, current NFL champions, will play tonight in Las Vegas against the San Francisco 49ers in a Super Bowl that promises strong emotions, including the presence of Taylor Swift to cheer on her partner, Travis Kelce.
The relationship between Swift, the most popular singer of the moment, and Kelce, another of the Chiefs’ leaders, has generated even more expectation for the great American sport show, which for the first time will have Las Vegas, Nevada, as its stage.
The final of the most powerful league in the world in the capital of gambling hopes to break records in both sports betting and television audiences, by adding new audiences attracted by the media-friendly romance between Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce.
The pop diva flew back to the United States on Saturday after performing in Tokyo and this Sunday arrived at Allegiant Stadium in a dark outfit and wearing a red jacket, the Chiefs’ color, on her shoulder.
Swift entered the venue accompanied by rapper Ice Spice and actress Blake Lively several hours before the start of the game (3:30 p.m. local time – 11:30 p.m. GMT) when Kelce and his teammates were warming up on the pitch.
Kansas City has won nine of the 13 games Swift has attended, with the singer often living the games intensely in the box, especially her partner’s plays.
A crowd of celebrities, high rollers and fans will pack the 65,000 seats of the Raiders’ stadium to enjoy the pulse between Mahomes’ Chiefs, Tom Brady’s heir, and the iconic 49ers, who have not lifted the Vince Lombardi trophy since the 1994 season.
Some 500 private planes will have landed for the game during a week in which Las Vegas received about 300,000 visitors who are estimated to have left between $600 and $700 million for the local economy.
Trump’s message about Swift and Kelce
Those lucky enough to get a ticket for the Super Bowl, whose halftime show will feature R&B star Usher, will have had to make a significant investment.
On the Stubhub ticket sales website, the cheapest available seats cost $5,713 on Sunday and the most expensive skyrocketed to $196,875.
The American Gaming Association expects around 67 million Americans – approximately one quarter of the country’s adult population – to place bets related to the Super Bowl, generating an estimated $23.1 billion.
This year’s Super Bowl also took on political overtones following Swift and Kelce’s relationship. The relationship has been the subject of conspiracy theories from right-wing voices claiming it is part of a plot to influence November’s presidential election and would culminate in a Kansas City win on Sunday and public support from Swift for Joe Biden.
Former President Donald Trump, a likely Republican candidate, referred to the singer on Sunday saying any support from Swift for Biden would be “disloyal,” given that his administration pushed copyright legislation in 2018 that is considered widely beneficial to artists.
“Joe Biden did nothing for Taylor, and he never will,” Trump wrote on his Truth Social network. “There is no way she could support corrupt Joe Biden, the worst and most corrupt President in the History of our Country, and be disloyal to the man who made her so much money.”
“Apart from that, I like her boyfriend, Travis, although he may be a liberal and probably doesn’t like me,” he added.
The ‘Chief’ dynasty at stake
Amidst all this whirlwind, the Chiefs and 49ers will meet again in a Super Bowl that has all the ingredients to become a classic.
Kansas City is present in the final for the fourth time in the last five seasons, with wins in 2020 and 2023 and a painful loss in 2021 to Brady and his Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The Chiefs dynasty would be officially inaugurated with a third ring which would also make them the first franchise to revalidate the championship since Brady did it with the New England Patriots between 2003 and 2004.
The clash is also key for Mahomes who, at 28, aspires to continue on the way towards Tom Brady’s record of seven titles. On the other side, the 49ers crave to end their title drought and take revenge for the loss they suffered to the Chiefs in the 2020 Super Bowl
In that final, held in Miami, Florida, Mahomes commanded a spectacular ten-point comeback in the last quarter until beating San Francisco 31-20.
The 49ers quarterback, Brock Purdy, will make his big stage debut at age 24 and will have at his disposal the league’s biggest offensive arsenal, with Christian McCaffrey, George Kittle and Deebo Samuel at the forefront.
The Chiefs, meanwhile, have reinvented themselves based on defense and, after an irregular campaign, arrive at their best time after dismissing powerful rivals such as Lamar Jackson’s MVP Baltimore Ravens in the playoffs.