Patrick Mahomes, Mr Irrelevant and Taylor Swift: Everything you need to know about the Super Bowl 2024

US

The 58th Super Bowl will kick off on Sunday – here’s all you need to know to watch the biggest game of the NFL season.

Often filled with drama, performance, politics and showbiz – the culmination of the NFL (National Football League) season is back for another year this weekend, with millions around the world set to tune in.

So sit back, relax, grab your match-day snacks and prepare for a classic.

When is it and how can I watch?

Super Bowl LVIII will be played at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Sunday 11 February.

It marks the first time the NFL’s biggest game will take place at the 65,000-capacity stadium, which is home to the Las Vegas Raiders.

Tickets are scarce and expensive, so we’re assuming most of you reading this aren’t heading to the Entertainment Capital of the World on the 11th.

Not to worry – you can catch the excitement from the comfort of your own home because it’s set to air on Sky Sports NFL (407) and Sky Sports Main Event (401).

Coverage starts at 10pm (UK time), with kick-off in the big game at 11.30pm.

If you’re up late and on the move, you can also watch the show with Sky Go – online or on NOW TV, with the Sky Sports Day Pass.

Who’s playing?

The Kansas City Chiefs have made it to the Super Bowl for the second year running.

They are the reigning champions, having beaten the Philadelphia Eagles last year.

They’ll be taking on the San Francisco 49ers this time around in a rematch of the 2020 season finale, when the Chiefs claimed a 31-20 victory over the 49ers at Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium.

Image:
49ers in action against the Chiefs during the 2020 Super Bowl. Pic: AP/Adam Hunger

The Chiefs could become only the eighth back-to-back winners and the first since the New England Patriots in 2004-2005.

Their challengers, who booked their place in Vegas with a stunning second-half comeback from 17 points down against the Detroit Lions, are chasing a first Super Bowl since 1995.

What can we expect from the match?

It’s a highly anticipated affair, perhaps particularly for the 49ers, who have had to wait four years to get their shot at revenge after losing to the Chiefs in 2020.

Head coach Kyle Shanahan has said: “There’s been some unfinished business for a while. We’ve set out for this for a long time, it’s been a long season. We can’t wait to get to Vegas.”

The Kansas City Chiefs may have the cooler heads, having reached the Super Bowl in four of the past five seasons.

Sky Sports NFL analyst Phoebe Schecter has given an early prediction: “I think it’s hard to bet against the Chiefs, they are experienced, they’ve been there so many times compared to a young guy like [49ers quarterback] Brock Purdy.

“But the 49ers defence are incredible.”

Who will sing the national anthem?

The American football show is known for its showbiz magic and touch of patriotic symbolism.

The national anthem often marks the opening of the grand event and has been a tradition year after year.

This year, Reba McEntire, unofficially known as “the Queen of Country” in the States, will be taking the lead.

Image:
Reba McEntire. Pic: Amy Harris/Invision/AP

The Country Music Hall of Famer might be a Super Bowl novice, but she’s got more experience than most when it comes to singing the national anthem.

The 68-year-old sang it for the first time in 1974 at the National Finals Rodeo, and has performed it there another nine times since..

Also on the bill is Grammy-nominated Rockstar rapper Post Malone, who will sing America The Beautiful, and singer Andra Day, who will perform Lift Every Voice and Sing.

Up next it’s the half-time show. Who’s performing?

Usher is the headline act for 2024’s half-time show, following on from Rihanna’s epic performance at the State Farm Stadium last year.

An eight-time Grammy Awards winner, the R&B star will feel right at home, having held an Usher: My Way residency in Las Vegas last year.

Image:
Usher. Pic: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst

“It’s an honour of a lifetime to finally check a Super Bowl performance off my bucket list,” he said after it was announced he would be performing.

“I can’t wait to bring the world a show unlike anything else they’ve seen from me before.”

Usher’s performance will begin at approximately 1.15am on Monday UK time following the conclusion of the first half.

What about the ads?

Roughly 200 million people tuned in to watch the Super Bowl last year – which makes it advertising’s biggest stage.

Big companies from Netflix to Google have paid as much as $7m for a 30-second spot.

In order to get as much as a return on investment for those millions, most advertisers release their ads in the days ahead of the big game to get the most publicity for their spots.

A lot of advertising companies simply release an ad trailer, showing off what celebrities are going to be promoting their products.

So… what celebrities are going to be showing off products?

So far, we know that footballing icon Lionel Messi, who’s become a household name in the US after moving to Inter Miami, will make his Super Bowl debut in an ad for Michelob Ultra beer.

Image:
Teaser of Lionel Messi in the beer advert. Pic: AP/Michelob Ultra

Then there’s Jenna Ortega, star of hit TV show, Wednesday, starring in a Doritos ad – the premise of which is her just really fancying a bag of crisps but seeing the store isles are empty.

Chris Pratt is taking on a new role: as the moustached “Mr P” that you see on the tins of Pringles cans. Clearly voicing a moustached protagonist in Super Mario wasn’t enough for him.

Addison Rae, who rose to fame on TikTok, will star in an ad for Nerds sweets as a dance instructor teaching a choreography routine to Irene Cara’s iconic What a Feeling track. What we don’t yet know is who the mystery student in her class is going to be.

SNL cast member, actress and comedian Kate McKinnon will star alongside a cat (for some reason) in an ad for Hellmann’s mayonnaise, while a disgruntled Helen Mirren sits at home watching football and eating snacks delivered by Uber Eats.

Then there’s going to be Kris Jenner, mother of Kim, Kylie, Kourtney, Kendall, Khloe and Rob, stacking Oreos and saying she’s going to go “warn the kids” about what she’s going to do next… whatever that means.

Could we see a Taylor Swift appearance?

The Chiefs may have become accustomed to a Super Bowl in recent years, but lets face it – their fanbase looks a little bit different this time around.

That’s because Taylor Swift has become a regular at Chiefs games since she started dating their star Travis Kelce last year.

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Taylor and Travis kiss after Chiefs win to reach Super Bowl

So Swifties who are tuning into their very first Super Bowl this year will no doubt be wondering if they’ll spot the pop sensation – or better yet, see her perform.

The Shake It Off singer’s current tour has dates in Tokyo that run from 7 February to February 10, the day before the Super Bowl.

But what does work in her favour is the fact that the Japanese capital is 17 hours ahead of the USA’s west coast, should she opt to take the 8,900km, 12-hour flight to Vegas to cheer on Kelce once more in person.

There have been rumours that Swift could even perform alongside Usher for a couple of songs, as special guests have been known to do in past shows.

But here’s some bad news for Swift fans: TMZ says sources “with direct knowledge” have told them the stage is all Usher’s.

And finally, who holds the most Super Bowl titles?

Here are the top wins from 1967 to 2022 according to Statista:

• Pittsburgh Steelers: 6
• New England Patriots: 6
• San Francisco 49ers: 5
• Dallas Cowboys: 5
• New York Giants: 4
• Green Bay Packers: 4

And that’s all you need to know for the big game – enjoy the match!

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