Strap on your helmets and grab your pizza slices, sports fans, because the Super Bowl is back for 2020 — and it’s going to be yuge. 2019 brought us a tense battle to crown the best NFL team in the world, with the New England Patriots squeaking past the Los Angeles Rams, but now we have a whole new contest on our hands in the form of Super Bowl LIV.
Miami, Florida plays host to America’s greatest sporting event this year, and the match is shaping up to be a big one. Historically, British viewers have had trouble watching the Super Bowl, but in 2020, catching the Super Bowl LIV is now easier than ever. Below, you’ll find a guide to catching every yard of the LIV this year — huddle up.
When is the Super Bowl?
Super Bowl LIV takes place on Sunday, February 2 2020, but as usual, us Brits will get short-changed, as we will have to stay up extra late to watch the game, as coverage starts at 11pm UK time.
Expect to have to keep your eyes open past midnight to catch kick-off, and the game will run all the way through the early hours of Monday, February 3.
Who’s playing in the 2020 Super Bowl LIV?
For Super Bowl LIV, the National Football Conference (NFC) champion San Francisco 49ers will face the American Football Conference (AFC) champion Kansas City Chiefs in the 54th annual Super Bowl.
How to watch the Super Bowl in the UK
You can watch the game in its entirety on Sky. If you don’t have Sky, it’s not a deal-breaker – you can watch the match through NOW TV, which is brilliant if you’re already signed up for the Sky Sports Pass or you already use it for TV shows or movies.
You can get a Sky Sports day pass for £9.99 here, a week pass for £14.99, or a month pass for £33.99, all without needing a contract – perfect for watching more than just NFL, as they have Premier League football, Cricket, Formula 1 and more.
Sign Up NOW TV
If, however, money is a bit tight at the moment, you can also watch the Super Bowl for free this year.
BBC One will be broadcasting the game live and for free (if you have a TV licence) with Mark Chapman commentating alongside former players Osi Umenyiora and Jason Bell.
If you don’t have a TV, though, don’t worry, you can still watch it live on BBC iPlayer on your phone, tablet or games console, so no excuses.
Who won Super Bowl 2019?
In what was the lowest-scoring Super Bowl in NFL history, the New England Patriots took the championship over the Los Angeles Rams 13-3, with only one touchdown.
It was the Patriots’ ninth Super Bowl and their sixth win, earning them the NFL record for both stats to make them one of the most decorated teams in history.
NFL rules: The basic rules of American football for 2020 Super Bowl LIV
Even if you’re new to the Super Bowl LIV for 2020, you should have a basic grasp on the rules that dictate the game – it’ll help the match between the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs make more sense, and help you appreciate the sport even more.
NFL rules: The ball
The purpose of the game is to move the ball into the opponent’s ‘end zone’, a 160ft wide area of the pitch behind the posts, which can be achieved by running with the ball or throwing the ball to a teammate further downfield.
NFL rules: ‘Downs’
‘Downs’ are one of the most confusing elements of the game. Essentially, the attacking team (the offence) needs to move the football forward in phases of at least 10 yards (around nine metres), with yardage marked on the NFL pitch. Each team has four chances to gain this yardarge.
Once the ball has moved 10 yards or more, another ‘down’ is earned and, with it, another four chances for another 10 yards. If the offence fails to do so, possession of the ball is surrendered to the defending team on the fourth down, usually by kicking.
NFL rules: Scoring
In the NFL, and as you’ll see in the Super Bowl LIV, there are several ways for a team to get points on the board. The most common is through a ‘touchdown’ (6pts), scored when the offence crosses the opposing team’s goal line with the ball, or catches it in the end zone. Field goals (3pts), not unlike a penalty or a drop-goal in rugby, is scored when the kicker blasts the ball through the opposition’s posts.
Another similarity with rugby is the ‘extra point’ (1-2pts), which can be earned by kicking the ball through the posts – or uprights – after a touchdown, just like a rugby conversion.
NFL rules: ‘Safety’ Points
Lastly, the defensive team can be awarded ‘safety’ points (2pts) when a member of the offensive team is tackled with the ball in their own end zone.
Who will perform during the Super Bowl half-time show?
Sometimes, it’s not just the football that’s important during the Super Bowl, everyone is always more interested in who’s doing the half-time performance.
This year, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez are rocking the world with the mid-game show in what promises to be a show for the ages.
And Demi Lovato will be performing the national anthem before the game starts, following in the footsteps of stars such as Diana Ross, Lady Gaga, Billy Joel, Gladys Knight and Beyoncé.
Digital Spy now has a newsletter – sign up to get it sent straight to your inbox.