It is the sporting occasion that stops America and for a few minutes after training at Carrington this week, the Super Bowl was also occupying the thoughts of City’s star names.
Two members of coach Mancini’s vaunted D – as they might refer to them in the USA – suited up to bring fans their unique take on this weekend’s clash between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots.
And a third of our international aces thought it wise to be on hand to throw a flag or two if things got out of hand between the big guys!
England defenders Joleon Lescott and Micah Richards have been engaged in a gentle feud all season long and ironically it kicked off in Los Angeles.
So it came as no surprise when they decided to take opposite sides in the argument over which franchise would be lifting the Vince Lombardi Trophy at the Lucas Oil Stadium in the early hours of the morning (GMT) on Monday. And just to make sure things didn’t get out of hand Nigel de Jong was refereeing.
Micah favours Eli Manning’s Giants whilst Lescott stays loyal to the AFC and is backing the Tom Brady-led Patriots to gain revenge in their second Super Bowl meeting with The Big Blue following their 17-14 loss in 2008.
Joleon’s love of NFL is long-standing; he was one of the most excited of the Blues players that visited the Baltimore Ravens training camp on a tour to the USA. He met with all-time greats Ray Lewis and Ed Reed on that trip and hooked up with Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson in Santa Monica last summer.
“I got into NFL from a really young age,” revealed Lescott. “A good friend of mine was into it in a big way because his dad was from America and a Miami Dolphins fan.
“I started watching it on TV on Sundays and really liked a player called Michael Vick who played for the Atlanta Falcons who sort of became my team. Having said that, I was more of a Vick fan than a Falcons fan.
“The NFL guys are very agile and quick and they put a lot of hard work into their game. I’d definitely like to give it a go when my playing career ends – whether I’m any good or not remains to be seen!”
Micah is a confirmed lover of Americana, too, and though his NFL credentials are less well defined, as a rookie, he is really looking forward this Sunday’s showdown.
“I got into it through a mate because I was more into basketball,” said the Blues’ defender. “But I met Steve Smith out in LA who is a good friend of my mate’s and he said I should give it a go and told me I had the physique for it.
“It’s a lot more physical than our game and a genuine contact sport, but it looks like quite a cool sport and it’s something I can see myself really getting into in the future.”
As for Nigel, he just loves sport full-stop and the combat and tactics clearly appeal to him – though we are not quite sure he would make a ‘Zebra’!
“I’ve been into NFL for about five years now,” said Nigel. “We have mutual friends out in the States who follow the sport and I’ve been watching it on TV for a few years now and I’ve really got into it.
“I love American sports in general, particularly NBA. I’ll be rooting for the Patriots on Sunday. The Giants have come out of nowhere, so it will be interesting. My team are the Pittsburgh Steelers, but they went out earlier so I’ll go with New England.”
Make sure you don't miss the latest Inside City on Saturady for the full story behind the lads' NFL escapades and who comes out on top between Joleon v Micah.
New England versus New York kicks off at 11.30pm our time on Sunday night. Madonna will be performing the half time show