Madonna to perform for sports fans

Madonna will provide the halftime show for the Superbowl in February. The interval entertainment at the annual American football showdown has been more interesting than the actual game in recent years.

Past Superbowls have seen the likes of Paul McCartney, The Who, Bruce Springsteen and Prince provide the soundtrack, as gridiron fans refuel with beer, hot dogs and those ingenious nacho hats beloved of Homer Simpson.

Madonna has been rumoured as the half-time show in the past, but this time it has been confirmed. Her segment will be choreographed by Jamie King, with involvement from the Montreal circus Cirque Du Soleil.

Given Madonna’s past form for provocative stage shows, you wonder whether she might be tempted to emulate the controversy generated in 2004 when Janet Jackson accidentally exposed a nipple in the infamous "wardrobe malfunction".

The main appeal for Madonna at this stage in her career is the huge exposure that the Superbowl offers. With saturation coverage across North America and global audiences fascinated by the American game, last year’s interval show reached an audience of 162 million. Madonna will back herself to attract even more interest than The Black Eyed Peas.

The Superbowl show amounts to a return to the day job for Madonna, whose movie career has become increasingly calamitous. She recently directed W.E. the biopic of Wallis Simpson. It attracted vast amounts of critical ridicule, and was widely regarded as making the work of ex-hubbie Guy Ritchie look positively classy by comparison.

The Superbowl takes place on February 5 in Indianapolis.

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