SAT, 7:45AM ET
WHU2
MCFC1
SAT, 10AM ET
LIV0
HULL0
SAT, 10AM ET
SUN0
ARS2
SAT, 10AM ET
SOU1
STO0
SAT, 12PM ET
REAL3
BARCA1
SAT, 12:30PM ET
SWA2
LEI0

What Should Tottenham Do About Their Stadium Dilemma?

new white hart lane What Should Tottenham Do About Their Stadium Dilemma?

I find Tottenham’s desire to occupy the Olympic Stadium in East London quite fascinating.

The traditionalist in me says that Spurs should stay at White Hart Lane. The ground has the best atmosphere in the Premier League and over the course of the season it certainly wins them points and helps spur them on to important victories in the Champions League. Move the club away from the ground, even if it’s to a brand-new White Hart Lane across the street and Tottenham will lose something. Yes, the new designs call for a much larger ground that will include some of the best traits of White Hart Lane. But it won’t be the same.

Neither will a move across London to Stratford to occupy the Olympic Stadium, to tear it down and build a new ground there. It’s the most economical for Spurs. They don’t have to worry about playing at White Hart Lane that would be half under construction as the builders prepared the new ground next door. Instead, Tottenham could keep on playing at the current White Hart Lane until the new ground in Stratford was ready, and then move in lock, stock and barrel. The savings Tottenham would achieve would be quite considerable. Enough to buy several quality players.

But the realist in me understands what it would mean uprooting Tottenham and its community and moving it to East London. The club wouldn’t be the same. The supporters would feel betrayal to the legacy of the club. And it would feel like stepping on someone else’s grave as they moved into the territory of West Ham United and Leyton Orient. It just wouldn’t feel right. There’s a reason the club is named Tottenham Hotspur and that’s because their home is in the Tottenham area of London. To move the club to a different part of the city and retain the same name seems bizarre to say the least.

The businessman in me, however, says that Tottenham should jump at the chance to move to Olympic Stadium. When millions of soccer fans around the world watch a Premier League match on television featuring Tottenham Hotspur playing at home, it doesn’t matter whether it’s at White Hart Lane or the Olympic Stadium. Both locations are in London. What’s most important is the soccer that’s played on the pitch. Most viewers couldn’t tell the difference between Seven Sisters and Scissor Sisters anyway.

The question comes down to this. What is more important for Tottenham Hotspur supporters? Success or to retain the legacy of the club. By staying in Tottenham, the club’s history will continue to be cherished. Move away and it’s destroyed but at the same time the club will be much richer for the move and more likely to buy success. Both decisions are flawed. In some ways, the best decision would be for the club to stay where they are now. It’d be simpler, but it would hurt the long-term success of the club as it would be able to generate as much revenue from matchday corporate seats as it would. And it would guarantee that Arsenal would get bigger and bigger while Tottenham, at the same time, stagnates.

What do you think? Should West Ham or Tottenham Hotspur move into the Olympic Stadium, or not? Share your opinion in the comments section below.

This entry was posted in General, Leagues: EPL. Bookmark the permalink.

About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
View all posts by Christopher Harris →

55 Responses to What Should Tottenham Do About Their Stadium Dilemma?

  1. Earl Reed says:

    I think there could be some creative options as well.

    What if West Ham, upon completion and relocation to the retrofit of Olympic Stadium, were to lease Upton Park to Tottenham Hotspur for the period it takes for them to renovate and expand White Hart Lane? The capacity for both venues is virtually the same.

    What if Tottenham were to work out a deal with the FA to lease Wembley Stadium for the period of time it would take to renovate? Further from home, but it would offer a higher capacity than a smaller venue closer to home. The down side is that, at that higher capacity, it might feel cavernous if they don’t fill the house.

    Or perhaps a combination of the two…what if the larger home matches (against Arsenal, Chelsea, United, and City) were played at Wembley, and the remainder scheduled at Upton Park? The downside would be that those big games might have more of a neutral site feel to them.

    Of course, I’m an American, there may be something taboo about playing a regular fixture at Wembley that I don’t know about. Regardless, there have to be options that allow Tottenham to renovate White Hart Lane without a ton of inconvenience to the club’s pursuits.

    • trickybrkn says:

      That was discussed, as a ground share and West Ham told them to F*^$ off. There is not much love between the two clubs boards. As West Ham feel that Spurs have routinely unsettled players with low ball bids. Why I think the Keene to West Ham is a joke.

      I think Spurs have a better chance of football at Twickenham, then Spurs at the Boleyn Ground.

      Better bet is at Charlton’s the Valley.

      • Spurs says:

        Pure nonsense. West Ham would jump at the chance of extra revenue. Theres no way West Ham would told Spurs to f*** off. It wasn’t even discussed as the % going to West Ham and the shit hospitality at Upton Park would mean Spurs would be way down on revenue. Wembley would be a better option but it’s booked out for events way into the future. The FA would be very reluctant.

  2. Gift Shop says:

    Atmosphere at WHL is excellent. Would be lost here!

  3. trev of thfc says:

    As a season ticket holder I will not be going to stratford, it is plainly wrong in all ways except for revenue, but is that what levy and enic value most. I understand the government are not willing to invest any funding for our new stadia as they did with the soul less scum stadium, wembley and the white elephant Olympic stadium.
    There is however scope to expand the existing whl by rebuilding the east stand to include 3 tiers and the park lane is one of the smallest stands in the league so could obviously be bigger. This would then give us approx 47k. Once this is complete we could build over the paxton road like man u have done which could bring it above 50k with the west stand still to be developed if finances permit and demand for tickets still high

  4. mattspur says:

    I’m warming to the idea of moving to the Olympic site. I love WHL & have had great times there but it won’t be the same anyway if it’s rebuilt next door nor would any of our history will be retained. So what’s the difference? The area? Selfishly I don’t give a toss about Tottenham as an area, but if we move there will probably be a condition that the current WHL site is developed for the benefit of the community. Our history is in our own memories – without the current WHL what’s there to remind of our history? Kebab shops?

    The cost savings of the Olympic site are enormous and we would make ourselves a prime opportunity for some mega-rich arab to buy us, make Levy the money that he clearly wants, and pump even more money into us. The sky could be the limit. Think how good it would be to race ahead of Ar*e and Chelski. But then there are those Spurs fans who wouldn’t like that & would rather wallow in familiar failure.

    Unfortunately I don’t think it will happen anyway as there appears to be too much opposition. I just hope there’s a already a deal done in the background with some arab & a few brown paper bags flying about.

  5. trulyyido says:

    Total betrayal,

    me and all my family, season ticket holders, will never set foot in east london.

    i KNOW at least another 20 or so that have ST and will not renew if were to go.

  6. vermaelen5 says:

    “Arsenal aren’t a true club because they haven’t always been in North London.” I’d love to see them keep saying that after a move to the Olympic.

  7. May says:

    I think we should clarify:

    It’s not “Tottenham’s” desire to move to Olympic Stadium….it’s the management’s desire. The vast majority of the fans are against it, and although I’m don’t really count myself as a Spurs fans (although I do greatly prefer them to Arsenal and Chelsea), I can understand why.

    The size and design of the stadium will kill the atmosphere. It’s not being designed as a football stadium, but rather as a “sports complex” – there will be a track around the field. That thought alone is absolutely revolting to me. Football stadiums are often referred to as “cathedrals” of football. There is something almost sacred and religious about them. Having a track around the field would be like having a church with a post office inside. It would totally kill the atmosphere.

    Most importantly is that Spurs would lose the moral high-ground in their rivalry with Arsenal. The rivalry dates back to when Arsenal MOVED their club from one area of London into Tottenham’s neighborhood and started to compete with them for their fans. Now Spurs are going to do the exact same thing to another area and concede North London to Arsenal?

    I can understand why they are pissed.

    • The Gaffer says:

      May, but Tottenham is management. The supporters don’t own the club. It is the desire of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club to move to the Olympic Stadium, although I realize most Spurs supporters are against it.

      If Spurs did win the bid for the Olympic Stadium, they would tear the whole thing down, remove the track and build their stadium there.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • dust in the wind says:

        Who have you spoken to in the Spurs exec camp to clarify the clubs desired to just move to the Olympic stadia?

        Im a spurs fan and shareholder, so… It isn’t owned by fans?

        I see nothing on the site or in any other literature stating the holding group prefers to move to the olympic stadia.

        In-fact “We now await the completion of a S106 with Haringey Council. We shall continue to keep you updated as we progress our new stadium plans.”

        What is an s106 I hear you ask?

        Section 106 (S106) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 allows a local planning authority (LPA) to enter into a legally-binding agreement or planning obligation with a landowner in association with the granting of planning permission. The obligation is termed a Section 106 Agreement.

        These agreements are a way of delivering or addressing matters that are necessary to make a development acceptable in planning terms. They are increasingly used to support the provision of services and infrastructure, such as highways, recreational facilities, education, health and affordable housing.

        That is spurs official stance. Please clarify your sources when stating “the management” desire a move to the olympic stadia.

      • May says:

        Oh, oh, oh, oh no.

        We can agree to disagree on a lot of things, but let’s get one thing straight: football clubs do not equal their management. Tottenham Hotspur was founded in 1882, and has a long, proud history with a vast and loyal fanbase and deep ties to its North London community. The current ownership (ENIC) has only been in place, for what? 10 years? Tottenham Hotspurs was here long before ENIC, and it will be here long after, because the club does not equal its ownership.

        The fans may not “own” the club – but they support it and that’s worth more, in my opinion. They show up, week after week, season after season, and pay A LOT of their hard-earned money to “their” club. Let’s see how far the management will get without them.

        Okay, technically, legally, you might be right, the management can do whatever the hell it likes without regard to the fans and the community. But I’m waiting for the day management announces they are moving “their” club to Stratford, because it makes the best economic sense.

        Football is about people: their history and their community. That’s why people get so passionate about it and are so loyal to their clubs. And the management that overlooks that all-important human factor and insist on applying “economic logic” are doomed to failure.

        (Actually, here’s a little secret from someone who’s actually studied a bit of economics: the thing that makes the most economic sense – in all cases, not just football – is taking care of the people. Companies that value the bottom-line over the health and well-being of their employees are not doing the best thing for the economy. I work for a company that thinks it makes economic sense to freeze our wages for the past THREE YEARS. Cost of living hasn’t frozen during that time. Which means that I have to cut back my spending to bare bones. Do you think that’s good for the economy in the long -or short- run? Nope. ECONOMY = PEOPLE)

        • MennoDaddy says:

          I’m sure that ECONOMY = PEOPLE will be of some comfort to you if Tottenham overspends by staying put and resigns itself to being a mid-table club because they can no longer afford quality players.

          I know I’m in the minority here, but I guess I just don’t see moving 9 miles across town as having as devastating an effect to club culture as what everyone else seems to think. I mean, ultimately they could move to frigging Penzance and I’d still be a Spurs supporter.

          • The Gaffer says:

            To be precise, the distance between White Hart Lane and the Olympic Stadium is 4.9 miles (7.1 miles by road). It may not seem like a lot, but in London (and England), it’s a bigger deal than in America. The traffic, for one, is killer in London.

            Cheers,
            The Gaffer

        • The Gaffer says:

          May, the supporters are a vital part of any football club but like it or not, management is in charge and can make decisions that can help or hurt the trust built with supporters. Remember though that Tottenham gets more revenue from TV than it does from matchday ticket sales. It’s important for clubs to keep supporters happy, but they may at times make business decisions which supporters don’t like.

          Cheers,
          The Gaffer

        • brn442 says:

          May, your quasi – marxist muddle is lovely to read but is not based in reality. As menno said – Spurs need a new stadium if they want to expand their brand.

          • Spurs says:

            Tesco and Asda are brands. Views like that are whats wrong with the modern game. The sort of supporters who go along with this ‘brand’ crap should be excluded from all football stadiums.

  8. MennoDaddy says:

    Man, I can so see both sides of this.

    Now, look, I’m a Yank who’s a relatively recent Spurs supporter, so my opinion doesn’t count for much. But I’ve seen the same arguments over and over again whenever a big club moves from their old historic digs to a new venue. We saw it with Arsenal moving Highbury to the Emirates. We saw it with City moving from Maine Road to Eastlands.

    For me, this decision is a major decision point for the future of the club. Spurs have only recently dipped their toe into the promised land of major European football, and they’ve done it the right way. If staying in Tottenham means maintaining the club’s history at the expense of being able to buy quality players and sinking back down to mid-table mediocrity, is it worth it? If staying in Tottenham means more infrastructure and transportation headaches, is it worth it?

    As an American, I’ve watched sports teams relocate, often to different cities, obliterating their history in the process. This happens most frequently in the NFL — The Cleveland Browns moving to Baltimore, the Houston Oilers moving to Tennessee, hell, the Baltimore Colts moving to Indianapolis. This doesn’t seem to me to be as drastic. I guess my take on it is that — all other things being equal — if relocation means Spurs are able to maintain a grip on the top 4 and Champions League qualification on a yearly basis, then by all means, relocate and thrive. I dare say we can find other things to spit on the Arse about than their relocation to North London 100 years ago.

    It’s either that, or stay put and find an Arab sugardaddy. I’d prefer the former.

    • dust in the wind says:

      No arab sugar daddy needed, our owner Joe Lewis is a billionaire, just shrewd. Levy has done a great job as chairman and if needed has license to spend.

      FYI to recoup the 600million dollars invested in city in the last 2 years alone they would have to win the next 6 prem titles in a row with the current squad. Thats not gonna happen! Once the arab prince is boared then what? unless as a boy he pined over the wonders of don levy and malcom allison and it was his dream to be a city owner (lOL) this will not be a good end for city

  9. Brian Perceful says:

    I think they should move if only to get rid of that ridiculous camera angle you see in tv.

  10. dust in the wind says:

    This whole Olympic stadium bid is all just very well executed strategy on behalf of spurs Chairman Daniel Levy and Billionaire owner Joseph Lewis to Maneuver Haringay Council on several sticking points.

    Tottenham Doesn’t want to move, there is far more money to be made from the complex they have designed that was approved by the London Mayor on the 25 of November 2010, than they would at he Olympic Stadium, irrespective of initial building costs.

    With 128 years of history and loyal fanbase in the Tottenham area the club pulling out would be disastrous, Haringay council what their piece of the pie and it is causing issues calmer heads will prevail later this year, and you will see spurs move ahead with the current plans and move away from the olympic stadia.

    The atmosphere at the lane is tremendous if you look at the plans, they have done everything possible to keep the intimate vibe while expanding the viewing area and capacity.

    Why doesn’t epltak request an interview with Mr Levy and ask him all about it! I’m sure he would be fine using the media to help him achieve what he wants for the club, “to stay in Tottenham”.

    Plus the area the olympic stadium is in is quite frankly, an “S” hole.

    • Spurs says:

      Nice comment but the problem is that Haringey council’s demands total about £16m. Hardly a big deal. The main problem for Spurs is English Heritage who blocked Spurs knocking certain buildings which in turn reduced new housing from 450 to 200 units. Haringey being the big issue has been inferred by Spurs but not actually said. WeareN17 pushed Levy on this lately and he conceded that Haringey only seek a standard sec. 106 agreement. Same as any large development. Haringey have said they will do all they can to speed along compulsory purchase on remaining land needed. They’ve actually been pretty good.

  11. Anthony says:

    I used to love going to White Hart Lane despite the inconvenience of transportation. As a young man, I lived through the Glory Glory years under Bill Nicholson and faithfully watched the team on every possible occasion. Now I live in the United States and rarely get to see the Lily Whites. I fully understand the economics. However, please, stay in Tottenham. Let history and belonging work along with profits. Say no to the Olympic stadium.

  12. Mario says:

    We are Tottenham super Tottenham,
    We are Tottenham from the Lane!

  13. jose says:

    hey gaffer, sorry i know this is another topic but king eric has joined the cosmos. f-ing excited.

  14. Andy Kay says:

    I’m a lifelong Spurs supporter and the thought of them leaving N17 and going to East London sticks in my throat, and I know my dad and Granddad are both spinning in the graves over this idea.

    But the simple fact is that football is no longer “just a game”, but a money making business. Levy and co. know that they can brand Tottenham as one of the best teams in Europe with a world class stadium in Stratford. It is an excellent transportation hub and fans will be able to get there from literally all over Europe to see the Spurs play. And for every fan like TrulyYiddo that say they won;t renew their season tickets, there are two or three people waiting in line to snap them up – there are something like 30,000 people on the Spurs season ticket waiting list. Regardless of this, Tottenham do not belong in East London.

    West Ham (with all due respect) are not the team for this place as they would play in front of a half empty stadium for every game. The thing that will kill Spurs bid for the Olympic Stadium are their plans to demolish it and build a new stadium in its place, and I really can’t see public opinion allowing that, given the cost of building the OS. The Northumberland Development Project should get the public backing it deserves so a new stadium and the infrastructure can be built in the Tottenham area, keeping Tottenham Hotspur where they belong – in Tottenham. This in turn will would also help one of the poorest districts (Haringey) in all of London.

    We are N17. Say NO to Stratford. http://wearen17.co.uk/

  15. brn442 says:

    Well, it’s not that simple. According to BBC’s “Sportweek” – Spurs may not be allowed to move to the Olympic Stadium anyway, because of their proposal to get rid of the running track and other modifications that will make the place a dedicated football ground, something that track and field proponents are not happy with, although a planned overhaul of Crystal Palace’s ground into an athletic hub may silence the critics. West Ham is supposedly willing to keep the stadium as is, if they were to take it.

  16. LC says:

    MennoDaddy, I’m in the same boat. New Spurs supporter in the States.

    The only parallel from which I can draw is when the Washington Redskins moved away from RFK Stadium (current home of DC United). RFK had character — it was within Washington city limits, easily accessible via Metro, sat 55k, and the stands would literally shake when fans got loud. Some of the bleachers were pull-outs, so people made it bounce. There was no better atmosphere in the NFL, and the Redskins enjoyed a massive home-field advantage because of it. Plus, their winning tradition and legacy was forged on that field.

    In 1997, they moved outside of Washington to Landover, Maryland. The new stadium, now called FedEx Field, is a hideous monstrosity of a stadium. It sits roughly 100k, has no character, no soul, is an eyesore, has lousy parking and public transport, is in a crappy neighborhood, and the gameday experience is nowhere near that of RFK.

    I’m sure that when the Redskins moved outside of Washington, there were many angry STH, and some that refused to follow them to the new house. That being said, the Redskins are still Washington through and through. No one has forgotten their rich history and tradition (probably because the team is so bad that we must remember the good times to keep from going insane). People are still crazy passionate about the team.

    While I cannot pretend to know what lifelong and multi-generational Spurs supporters are feeling, I can sympathize but also draw solace from my experience as a Redskins fan. I have no idea what the logistical challenges are for you in London whether they stay in Tottenham or move. But as a supporter from afar, if an Olympic move equals greater success on the playing field, then to me it makes sense, for whatever it’s worth.

    But make no mistake, a part of me wishes that my NFL team were back in Washington.

    • David says:

      The thing is, it was basically the DC city government’s fault that the new stadium didn’t get built (they had an agreement to build, but it fell apart over enviromental studies and government red tape). It’s the same situation with the MLS team DC United- they want to build a soccer specific stadium, preferably within the city limits, but there are issues with the city council there (as well as financial considerations), and fans of the team are worried that in the best case, the team moves to the Maryland or Virginia suburbs; in the worst case, the team moves to another city completely (St Louis is mentioned a lot).

      I understand why there’s so much consternation- in the business side of it, you need the luxury boxes (and has any EPL team done Personal Seat Licenses- where you have to pay a fee just for the right to have the opportunity to get season tickets?). But a team such as the Boston Red Sox have been able to work around something like this without having to move (the luxury seats on top of their famous Green Monster wall for example).

  17. Halitosis says:

    In my mind, it’s all about transport issues. Having planning permission and mayoral approval of a new 57,000 seater in Tottenham is all very well, but getting to the ground is already a nightmare. Like most fans, I would prefer to stay in N17 if a new tube/train station could be built. Failing that, getting to Stratford would be easier for the majority of match-goers – the majority of whom travel from farthar afield than North London.

  18. ossie's.dream says:

    I’ll echo what someone else said above – I suspect THFC is using the Olympic Stadium as a ploy for leverage against Haringey Council, London Transport, etc. At least I hope so…and I hope it works. Football fans, especially those getting a bit long in the tooth (I’ve supported Spurs since the late 70s), are soppy sentimentalists at heart and like to think that tradition and heritage stand for something. The Lane and The Shelf occupy a special place in our hearts. Alistair Campbell tweeted on Sunday that the noise at WHL is twice is loud as the Emirates but with half the capacity. Says it all.

  19. chris gray says:

    As I understand it designs/costs of new stadia at Tottenham/Stratford broadly similar. Extra costs at Tottenham for supermarket, hotel, etc. which will generate income – otherwise why do them. Moving to Stratford involves owning the stadium but not the land it’s built on. Stratford better transport links. Tottenham has the Spurs heritage. On balance would prefer re-build at Tottenham.

    • The Gaffer says:

      But Chris, how much money will Tottenham lose if/when they build their new stadium adjacent to White Hart Lane? It’ll be reduced attendances for several months while builders work on the new ground, which will definitely have a big impact on revenues. If Spurs are selected for the Olympic Stadium, the new ground there can be built while Spurs play at White Hart Lane.

      Spurs estimate that moving to Stratford would be roughly £200m cheaper than an alternative plan to rebuild White Hart Lane. You could buy eight Darren Bents for that much! ;)

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • chris gray says:

        Spurs have said capacity will not fall below current 36,000 during re-building – design is quite clever with new stadium being built with open south end until current stadium demolished- so capacity will gradually increase from 36,000 to 56,000.

        The figure of £200 million cheaper at Stratford is misleading. The stadium design/cost at Tottenham/Stratford is broadly the same. The extra cost at Tottenham is investment in supermarket, hotel, apartments, etc which is only being done to make money . Only cost that doesn’t is transport, etc contributions.

        Spurs also own the land at Tottenham but will be leasing the land at Stratford.

  20. David G says:

    I know as an American I don’t quite understand how people are so upset by a 5 mile move since it happens all the time here. Redskins don’t play in DC, Jets/Giants don’t play in New York, Rays don’t play in Tampa, etc… but what if the poll said something different like

    1. Move to Olympic Grounds save 100′s of millions
    2. Stay in WHL build some extra seats generating some but not much extra revenue and in two to three years watch Bale and Modric Leave because the club cannot pay the wages that match their abilities.

    • Andy Kay says:

      David G. Spurs moving to Stratford is the equivalent of the Brooklyn Dodgers moving to LA, or the NY Giants moving from the Polo Grounds to the west coast – two moves that are still mourned by those it affected to this day.

      The team has a history and a connection to Tottenham, N17 that goes back to 1898. More to the point, London is unlike any city in the USA and to the fans of the Spurs, a short move like this is the equivalent to going into enemy territory.

      Tottenham Hotspur are at least connected to Tottenham N17…. West Ham don’t play in West Ham, Chelsea don’t play in Chelsea and there’s no district or neighborhood in London called Arsenal (and there never was!)

      • David G says:

        I think comparing Spurs moving 5 miles away while still playing in London to Giants/Dodgers moving to another coast 3,000 miles is a little much. I’m guessing almost everyone in London is capable of traveling 5 miles either by car, train, subway, cab, horse, foot, etc. That’s much differenent than going fromt the Atlantic Coast to the Pacific Coast especially as the Dodgers moved in 1958!

        I think fans should be realistic. If they want Spurs to stay in a small out dated, albeit with a great enviroment, stadium and be at a severe financial disadvantage to the Arsenals, Man City’s, Man U’s, etc…than so be it. But if fans want to keep up with the big boys a solution has to be found and the most efficient the better.

        For those who are pining for football to stay in the “good ole days” well they’re long gone. Things change. Get onboard because it’s only going to get more and more about business.

        • Andy Kay says:

          Well I don’t think anyone is proposing that the Spurs stay in a “small outdated” stadium as you put it, but the “Say no to Stratford” campaign is proposing that the best way forward for this team is to forget about Olympic Stadium and continue with the Northumberland Development Project (link further down the page) which I’m guessing you’re not familiar with.

          NDP would mean a brand new purpose built stadium in N17, the team would stay in its historical home and at the same time help to regenerate one of the poorest districts in all of London.

  21. Newb says:

    I’m familiar with the issue, but I thought that West Ham is also looking to occupy the Olympic Stadium…if that’s the case, it seems to me that they would have a much stronger claim to the stadium?

  22. Newb says:

    Of course, what I meant was “not” familiar with the issue.

    • Andy Kay says:

      Unfortunately it is a bid process and the team that wins as the “preferred bidder” as considered by the Olympic Park Legacy Company will then have their bid considered by the UK Government and the Mayor of London it. It is not just a question of the money involved, but the whole plan that the teams will provide as their bid.

      Interestingly enough an Olympic Park Legacy Company board member has been disqualified from the decision making process because of a conflict of interest with West Ham’s backers, Newham Council. This is very embarrassing for W. Ham and may damage their bid.

      Article here: http://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/19012011/58/london-2012-olympic-park-legacy-company-exclude-board-member.html

      • Guy says:

        “Interestingly enough an Olympic Park Legacy Company board member has been disqualified from the decision making process because of a conflict of interest with West Ham’s backers, Newham Council.”

        Wow. If it had been FIFA nobody would have “noticed”. ;-)

  23. chris gray says:

    I think business advantages for Stratford are:

    Stadium slightly bigger – 60,000 v.56,000
    Land rented – so sale of Tottenham site which is owned can offset building costs at Stratford – but rent at Stratford may be quite high, partly based on football/concert income, etc
    Transport links better – probably don’t matter so much for football – supporters used to lousy current links – but better for new customers – AEG concert go-ers
    Possible lower contributions to public purse for transport, etc But will need to make contribution re athletics
    Less risk – Tottenham project involves supermarket, hotel, apartments that all need to succeed and make profits
    So can see arguments for Stratford from a business sense.

    But we’ll lose some of the Spurs heritage, and also play on a pitch that we don’t actually own !!

    • Andy Kay says:

      Excellent overview, thanks Chris. I think the biggest problem Tottenham have now is the PR nightmare of having their plans revealed to basically demolish the Olympic Stadium and rebuild it to their own plans and specifications.

      The average person in the UK will just see “demolish the Olympic stadium” and nothing more. Already some of the press is up in arms over this plan and as the stadium was built (partially) with money from the British people (lottery income etc.) and they were promised it would be the home for British athletics for years to come, the whole “build a football ground” plan is a tough sell.

      • chris gray says:

        Agreed.
        But why not find somewhere else in Olympic Park for athletics stadium, rather than Crystal Palace. That would help a little.

        Also weakness of West Ham case may help – even a full stadium with an athletics track around will lack atmosphere, let alone one only half full, or less than half full. Reminds me of QPR at White City in 1962 – only lasted a year or so before they returned to Loftus Road.

      • Dave C says:

        The average person in the UK will just see “demolish the Olympic stadium” and nothing more.
        True, but I believe the full plan is for Tottenham to rebuild the stadium as a footballing facility, AND build a specific athletics facility elsewhere (Crystal Palace). Which to be honest makes sense, because no track’n’field/Athletics event other than the Olympics is ever going to fill a 60k stadium.

  24. Ringo says:

    I’m a Yank but as big a Spurs supporter as a Yank can be. My preferred option would be to build the new stadium in Tottenham rather than move to the Olympic Stadium. I can imagine what it would be like if one of my local teams moved a considerable distance away, and that’s essentially what it means to move from one section of London to another when the clubs have come to represent the area they reside in. The Northumberland Development Project is a well-thought-out plan and, although it is not as cheap as the move to the Olympic stadium would be, it has several benefits that the Olympic Stadium could never match.

    First and foremost, the club retains the Tottenham identity and all that comes with it. The supporters, the ages of history, the hallowed ground – it all remains except for the brick and mortar of White Hart Lane. Second, it would be an actual football stadium. The Olympic Stadium is built as an all-purpose athletics venue and is not designed for the acoustics, vantage points, etc. that have all been taken into account with the Northumberland Project. Spurs don’t need all of the extra capacity either – 57,000 would be enough and the stadium mock-ups look damn impressive, which brings me to my next point. The Northumberland Project is more than just a stadium. There will be a new courtyard with retained historic buildings and new landscaping in front of the stadium, a 150 bedroom hotel, 200 new homes, a new supermarket, a museum, and a new Skybar and roof garden. Basically, a complete overhaul of the neighborhood. All of this would bring in loads of money for the club and provide a fantastic experience for the fans. In many ways this project represents the club strengthening its bond with Tottenham. It gives back to the fans and also gives more fans the chance to support their club. The Olympic Stadium bid would be the exact opposite of that, and that’s why it should be rubbished.

    http://www.tottenhamhotspur.com/futureplans/scheme/masterplan.html

  25. Jon says:

    One aspect that has not been discussed by the media or either side of the debate in these comments is that the key issue in any new stadium for Tottenham (or any club) is *not* capacity. Commercial viability of the club is not linked to the seating size of the ground, and the matchday revenue difference between a 38,000 and 50,000 seat stadium is not actually very large, if the seats are general seating. The real revenue from a new stadium comes in the form of corporate boxes that are worth hundreds of times the amount they could generate if they were a few extra seats. You can see this clear difference in the economic impact that the Emirates has on Arsenal’s matchday revenue. True, the Emirates is a 60,000 seat stadium, but the massive influx of revenue is from the fact that the Emirates has an entire concourse of corporate luxury boxes and facilities that go for thousands or tens of thousands of pounds each. Just look at the numbers – Arsenal’s matchday revenue is very close to Manchester United’s, though United’s Old Trafford has a 75,000 seat capacity. The extra 15,000 fans per game hardly make a difference, because Arsenal has a much newer and better structured luxury box setup.

    A lot of the discussion here has focussed on the assumption that a move to the Olympic Stadium would be better commercially for Tottenham, while staying the N17 would be better historically. I am not sure the former assumption has been properly examined and is based on a false idea of the power of satdium capcity. Would a move to Stratford really benefit Tottenham? Only if the setup was such that there was a good set of luxury boxes to boost matchday revenue. That, rather than the worry about sight lines and the track, is the real reason they want to demolish the stadium and rebuild. If Tottenham can actually build a more effective corporate stadium with the new White Hart Lane plan, then that might be more commerically viable for them as well as historically better. I agree that it might have higher front end costs (ie, moving to Stratford is cheaper for them now) but in the long run it’s where the best corporate luxury box setup can be achieved that will decide where they ought to move if the reason is to stay competitive with Arsenal and United.

    Just my view on changing, slightly, the debate here to get away from the idea that raw capacity means anything in this discussion. Because it doesn’t.

    Although, full disclosure – as an Arsenal fan I would love to see Spurs move on down the road.

    Cheers,

    Jon

  26. Ash says:

    trev, and others who may also be under this false impression – Arsenal did not get any public money from Islington of elsewhere to build their stadium.

  27. Cannon Balls says:

    I have to say this is absolutely hilarious! Spuds will lose out either way. Par for the course though for you lot. All those previous comments about Arsenal’s “stadium on wheels”. You couldn’t make it up!

    Tottenham Hotspur – the club where the road to success is always under construction!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>