The American college football Sydney Cup will return for a second time at Allianz Stadium on Saturday.
The Stanford Cardinals are set to play against the Rice Owls in Sydney for the season-opening game of the 2017 NCAA College Football season.
Last years Sydney Cup attracted a 61,247 crowd at ANZ’s 83,500 capacity stadium.
However, this year the game is being hosted at the much smaller Allianz Stadium, which holds a maximum crowd capacity of 45,500.
Deputy Premier John Barilaro welcomed members of both sides to Sydney on Tuesday with some Aussie icons on hand including a koala and a wallaby joey.
He is hopeful that the sporting event will help increase tourism and provide a boost for Sydney’s economy.
“We recognise sport as an industry that attracts tourism and showcases a city like Sydney. From recent experiences of events held in Sydney we know its fantastic for the economy and for jobs,” Mr Barilaro said.
Despite the smaller venue, Deputy Premier Barilaro predicted a multi-million contribution to the economy, saying that he is “expecting something like 19,000 non-Sydney visitors".
American Football has been an increasing sporting interest for Australians, fuelled by sporting figures such as Jarryd Hayne who played in the NFL briefly in 2015.
Last year, OzTAM and RegTAM revealed that 1.2 million Australians tuned in for Channel Seven’s coverage of Super Bowl 50.
David Bailiff, head coach of Rice Owls football, expressed the importance beyond the football event for the young athletes.
“It is a football game and it is very important to us, but it's also very important to us that our guys get to experience some of Sydney and the culture, we are an elite academic institution and we want this not only to be a football trip but an educational adventure for these young men.”
Stanford Cardinals head coach, David Shaw reiterated this point, saying that “as much as this is an opportunity to play a great football game this is a potential life-changing situation for so many of our players".
Entertainment includes Stanford’s and Rice’s cheerleading squad as well as an American style menu.
Kickoff is scheduled for 12:00 PM.