American Football: Popstar Taylor Swift arrives early for Super Bowl LVIII at Las Vegas

The Super Bowl has had an early jolt of excitement, when enormous TV screens around the cavernous stadium showed pop superstar Taylor Swift arriving at the Las Vegas Allegiant Stadium some two hours before kickoff.

Swift is at Las Vegas to watch tightend boyfriend Travis Kelce and his Kansas City Chiefs take on San Francisco 49ers to end a weeklong will-she-won-she saga that has dominated the lead-up to the glitzy Vegas blockbuster.

A punishing travel schedule has seen her fly from Japan to the US and she will then jet to Australia for tour commitments, so her presence was not a foregone conclusion. When the television screens showed Swift - wearing a black top, black jeans and with a red Chiefs jacket over her shoulder - a ripple of cheers went around the still-mostly empty stadium.

Taylor Swift performs at Tokyo, Travis Kelce arrives for the Super Bowl.
Taylor Swift performs at Tokyo, Travis Kelce arrives for the Super Bowl. Photo credit: Getty Images

Videos of the 'Shake if Off' singer walking through the bowels of the stadium greeting friends began rapidly appearing on social media.

Swift has attended 12 Chiefs games, since she began dating Kelce last year, boosting already skyhigh NFL ratings. There were fears she could miss the biggest game of all, due to scheduling conflicts with her 'Eras Tour, which had her performing at Tokyo on February 10, the night before the Super Bowl.

The singer, who last weekend won the Grammy Award for Album of the Year for a record fourth time, will not be in the US for long. She is scheduled to head to Australia for seven soldout concerts, starting at Melbourne on February 16.

Swift and her army of devotees, known as 'Swifties', brings a megawatt star power to the NFL and the Swift-Kelce love story marks a collision between two of the most powerful forces in American pop culture.

As shirt sales spike and viewership grows, the romance has brought millions of dollars of added brand value to the Chiefs and the NFL, according to research done by Apex Marketing Group.

"Taylor Swift's association with Travis Kelce and appearances at the Chiefs game has generated an equivalent brand value of US$331.5 million for Kansas City Chiefs and the NFL" said Apex president Eric Smallwood.

Many fans at Las Vegas for the extravaganza were hoping she would turn up.

"More women need to watch NFL," said Donna Collier, a 61-year-old football fan from Kentucky. "We need to get more involved in sports.

"I think it's great ... so go, Taylor." 

Pam Bortz, a 57-year-old 'Swiftie' from South Carolina, agreed: "I think it is a wonderful thing.

"She is an awesome person and it just really adds to the excitement of being here for the Super Bowl."

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell could be forgiven for rubbing his hands in glee and earlier this week told reporters it was great to have Swift part of the NFL story.

Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift celebrate a Chiefs victory.
Travis Kelce and Taylor Swift celebrate a Chiefs victory. Photo credit: Getty Images

"Having the Taylor Swift effect is a positive,"he said. "They - both Travis and Taylor - are wonderful people and they seem very happy.

"She knows great entertainment and I think it is great to have her a part of it.

"Obviously, it creates a buzz... another group of young fans that are interested and saying, 'Why is she going to this game?'"

The defending champion Chiefs are taking on San Francisco 49ers in the 58th edition of the NFL's title game at Allegiant Stadium.

For the Chiefs, victory would mean a second successive Super Bowl and third in five years. The 49ers are seeking a record-tying sixth Super Bowl title in their eighth appearance in the NFL's championship game.