One of the most famous stadiums in the world will soon be the property of a Pakistani-American billionaire.
Shahid Khan, who owns both the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars and the Fulham Football Club, has been given the go-ahead to pursue a purchase of London’s Wembley Stadium for £600 million.
Khan has been in talks to purchase the stadium since February 2017. His bid to purchase the stadium will be presented for approval to the Football Association in October. The original Wembley Stadium opened in 1923 but was demolished in 2003 to make way for a new venue to be built on the same site.
The Independent reports that one of the reasons Khan is interested in purchasing Wembley is to increase the visibility of the Jaguars in the UK. The NFL has been looking to expand its presence in London for several years and the Jaguars have played an official game at Wembley for the past five years. (This year, they are set to face off against the Philadelphia Eagles on October 28.)
In addition to being a sports stadium, Wembley has also been home to some of the greatest musical performances of all time. In 1985, Freddie Mercury performed his legendary Live Aid set there and Princes William and Harry hosted the Concert for Diana there in 2007.
As part of the sales agreement, Khan would not change the name of the legendary venue. The stadium would also continue to host both national games and cup matches.
“Wembley is the essence, the cradle of English football,” Khan told the BBC in April. “We would very much like for England matches and cup finals to be played at Wembley, that is the DNA.”