Thousands of American football fans from across the United States and beyond have descended on the San Francisco Bay area ahead of Sunday's Super Bowl.

The Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers were primed to provide a grand finish worthy of a landmark Super Bowl 50 and cap a season of celebration by the National Football League.

The game starts at 23:30 GMT on Sunday. 

An estimated 190 million Americans and a worldwide TV audience are set to tune in for a game that has the hallmarks of an instant classic as Carolina's top-ranked offence clashes with Denver's number one defence in a Silicon Valley showdown for the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

The game will feature two generational talents on offense with Carolina quarterback Cam Newton on the cusp of greatness and five-time NFL Most Valuable Player Peyton Manning playing what could be his last game, but the victor will likely be determined by the play of the defences.

With a victory on Sunday the Panthers would find themselves with an 18-1 record, a Super Bowl and in the discussion about the greatest NFL teams of all-time.

A Denver defence that led the NFL in sacks can expect a long evening trying to contain Newton while Manning will engage in an intriguing chess match with a Panthers defence spearheaded by All-Pro linebacker Luke Kuechly that led the league in takeaways.

Source: Al Jazeera and agencies