How Taylor Swift's Eras Tour is wreaking havoc in sport

Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour is generating bad blood between her and sport, with Lionel Messi and Argentina re-homed for crunch clash and AEW wrestling out of pocket over Wembley dates… while she could yet be responsible for RELEGATING French giants Lyon

  • Global star Taylor Swift was named Time’s ‘Person of the Year’ for 2023 this week
  • Shattering records, the singer is on track to have the highest-grossing tour ever
  • Sport’s venues have been forced to adapt because of her success and influence

What a year it’s been for Taylor Swift. After almost two decades in the music charts, the pop icon surged to new levels of influence and fame in 2023 with the launch of her record-breaking global tour and on Wednesday became the first entertainer in history to be named Time magazine’s Person of the Year.

The Eras Tour, which comprehensively showcases the 33-year-old’s entire career in music so far, has shattered ticket sale records and is on track to become the highest-grossing tour ever, according to Billboard. It is claimed her tour has generated a total revenue of £715million so far, averaging out at just over £11m per show.

With resale prices rising as high as £22,000 per ticket, a federal investigation was launched into how sales were made online. Her tour’s success fathered a concert movie, ‘Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour’, grossing £200m globally and proving a major hit with both critics and ‘Swifties’, her die-hard fanbase.

The most streamed artist of 2023 also hit the headlines in the sporting world this year by frequently attending NFL games to watch and support her new boyfriend, Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce. Forbes magazine has also this week labelled Swift the fifth most powerful woman in the world.

Her success, power and influence has grown so meteorically that sporting venues have been forced to adapt, cancel and change plans to make way for her inexorable tour. MailOnline takes a look at how Taylor Swift’s record-shattering year has wreaked havoc across sport.

Sport has been forced to adapt following a record-breaking year for pop sensation Taylor Swift

The American superstar, 33, was named Time magazine’s ‘Person of the Year’ on Wednesday

Swift, right, also hit the headlines in the sporting world this year by frequently attending NFL games to watch and support her new boyfriend, Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce 

Kelce and Swift are pictured together  in New York as they arrive at SNL Afterparty in October

Move over Messi, Taylor’s in town

Swift’s tour unexpectedly forced the 2022 World Cup winners to find a new stadium ahead of their home clash against Uruguay in November, causing chaos for Argentina FA organisers.

The American singer-songwriter travelled to Buenos Aires last month to perform three shows at River Plate’s stadium Estadio Monumental, entertaining fans on November 8, 11 and 12.

Die-hard Swifties camped out for more than five months ahead of her show in Argentina

Unlike England with Wembley or France with the Stade de France, Argentina do not technically have a dedicated national football stadium and thus regularly use River Plate’s 86,000-seater ground for home matches.

Lionel Messi and Co were scheduled to take on their South American rivals Uruguay in a 2026 World Cup qualifier at the venue five days after Swift’s final show, but the pitch failed to recover in time.

Argentina FA chiefs swiftly – no pun intended – switched the venue so that the match was played at Boca Juniors’ 57,000-seater stadium La Bombonera instead.

The Albiceleste ultimately lost 2-0 to Uruguay after the last-minute switch, conceding goals to Barcelona’s Ronald Araujo and Liverpool’s Darwin Nunez.

MailOnline revealed in November that die-hard ‘Swifties’ had camped outside the Estadio Monumental for more than five months in a bid to get the best spot for the global icon’s Argentina shows.  

When fans are putting in that amount of dedication, no wonder football made exceptions.  

Fans watch adoringly in Argentina as Swift performs at the Estadio Monumental in November

World Cup winner Lionel Messi and the Argentina national football team were forced to move to La Bombonera as a result of Swift’s Eras Tour – and were ultimately beaten 2-0 by Uruguay

Wrestling’s ‘karma’ favour

Swift risked bad blood with All Elite Wrestling last month after Wembley agreed to schedule two more Eras Tour shows ahead of AEW’s All In pay-per-view event next summer. 

All In, which takes place on August 25 next year at the iconic 90,000-capacity stadium in London, will now have limited time to prepare for the spectacle after the Eras Tour added two dates to its schedule on August 19 and 20.

Swift’s tour broke a UK record for the highest pre-sale ticket numbers in history and thus decided to give disappointed fans what they wanted with two more opportunities to watch the pop sensation live, with dates on August 15, 16 and 17 already proving immensely popular. She is also scheduled to perform three more sold-out shows in June.

Fortunately, AEW president Tony Khan took it in his stride and agreed to speed up All In’s set-up to accommodate the extra performances.

Swift added two more shows to her Eras Tour at Wembley, taking her tally there to eight nights

AEW will speed up their Wembley installation in August to help Swift perform two extra shows

AEW President Tony Khan joked that he hopes the favor will bring ‘good karma’ to the company

Khan told MailOnline: ‘Organisers came to us and said it would help us out a lot if you could load in your show faster because we’d have the opportunity to have more Taylor Swift shows, and could you guys do that? And we said, well, it’ll be costly and very challenging, and we really would like to help you out. And so yeah, I will.

‘And I think there’s so many great Taylor Swift fans and Wembley’s been great to us. We have a great relationship and it’s going to cost more, and we will double our efforts and hopefully score points with a lot of great fans and a great community of Taylor Swift fans. 

‘Everybody wins. And I’m not going to get crushed or killed in the process, so I’m fine with that. And I think a little bit of extra money and a little bit of extra human power getting the show put on, it’s worth it.’

Khan finished off by joking that the favour will hopefully bring him ‘good karma’, referencing Swift’s hit song from her 2022 studio album Midnights.

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Lyon’s fearing a cruel summer

The seven-time French champions would never in their wildest dreams have feared that Swift could contribute to their downfall, but it could feasibly happen in a bizarre turn of events.

Lyon, who are used to competing for Europe rather than scrapping for survival, have won just one of their opening 13 league matches this season and currently sit bottom of the Ligue 1 table.

The historic club’s Groupama Stadium is set to host Swift’s Eras Tour on June 2 and 3 next year, and these dates could have hefty consequences for the relegation-threatened side.

If Lyon finish 16th at the end of the season, two places higher than their current position, they will play the winner of Ligue 2’s promotion play-offs in a two leg relegation shootout. 

The winner of the match will play in the French top flight in 2024-25, while the other drop down to the second tier. 

As the second leg is always played at the home stadium of the Ligue 1 side, and Swift’s tour at Groupama Stadium coincides with the date of the fixture, Lyon could feasibly be unable to host the match.

Although solutions could be found, Lyon would be unable to host the second leg as it stands were they to finish 16th at the end of the season. There’s a chance, albeit slim, that if unable to propose a viable solution, the French club could be relegated as a result. 

The Groupama Stadium, which holds just shy of 60,000 fans, will stage Swift’s tour on consecutive nights next June, and this could cause French football club Lyon serious problems

If bottom-placed Lyon finish 16th at the end of the season, they will not have a stadium to host the second leg of their relegation play-off against the winners of Ligue 2, because of Swift 

Having never expected their team to be involved in a relegation battle, Lyon bosses scheduled the Swift concerts to increase the club’s revenue, but now the gamble could backfire hugely

A more likely scenario is that Lyon will be forced to play the second leg in an alternative stadium and thus concede home advantage.

Having never expected their team to be involved in a relegation battle, Lyon bosses scheduled the Swift concerts to increase the club’s revenue.

However, this gamble could backfire massively come the end of the season.

Suffering relegation would be a huge fall from grace for Lyon after they made the semi-finals of the Champions League just three years ago, beating Manchester City on their way to the last four.


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