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What Are Your Thoughts On West Ham’s Move to the Olympic Stadium?

West Ham Olympic Crest What Are Your Thoughts On West Hams Move to the Olympic Stadium?

While Tottenham Hotspur readies for the resumption of European nights, West Ham United drowns deep in the relegation zone. But West Ham have at least trumped Tottenham’s bid for London’s Olympic Stadium after the Olympic Park Legacy Company’sunanimous decision Friday. The Hammers’ bid, led by their brain trust of David Gold, David Sullivan and Karren Brady, was more conservative and likely won because their bid promises to maintain the athletics track. Playing at the gleaming, massive Olympic Stadium could be a crucial financial turning point for the Hammers, who have fallen well behind the other London-based Premier League clubs success-wise (with Millwall and QPR possibly rising up out of the Championship).

London Map Showing Olympic Stadium and Upton Park What Are Your Thoughts On West Hams Move to the Olympic Stadium?

West Ham may only be moving approximately 2.5 miles, close enough for blown bubbles to reach; but they will still be leaving behind a site in which they’ve played football since 1904. What are your thoughts on the move? And should the club change its name to West Ham Olympic as Brady herself has pondered? And lastly, what does self-proclaimed Irons supporter President Barack Obama think of all this?

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19 Responses to What Are Your Thoughts On West Ham’s Move to the Olympic Stadium?

  1. Andy Kay says:

    They can have it. West Ham are staring at relegation this year with no guarantee of getting back into the EPL anytime soon, so they will be in a 60,000 seat stadium that will likely be half-empty for home games. The only way they can guarantee getting healthy attendance is by giving tickets away to local schools and allowing families to come in for the price of a single ticket (both ideas already floated by the horrible Karren Brady). The fans will be so far away from the pitch thanks to the running track they will need binoculars to see what’s going on. West Ham does not have the drawing power, the big name players or the possibility of playing in European competition to sell boxes to big name corporations – the only way now for a team to make money (Emirates Stadium being the prime example of this).

    They might as well name the stadium the “White Elephant” now and save time later. I have a fondness for West Ham having grown up in East London, but this is possibly the worst thing that could happen to the Hammers. Actually Brady and Gold are the worst thing to happen to West Ham.

  2. Eric says:

    Sad to see them leave. But the financial reward outweighs everything, including nostalgia.

  3. Fitter says:

    Geographically, it should belong to the Hammers (apologies to Leyton Orient), however the layout of the stadium is terrible for football.

    The track around the pitch is a disaster from a fan’s perspective. Spurs had the best idea of doing a tear down of portions the stadium with conversion to a football appropriate set-up. Unless these ‘promises’ of keeping the track are legally binding, that is also what West Ham should do!

    • Brian says:

      Whoever bid to use the stadium knew that a promise had been made to retain the arena for Athletics so therefore no other bids should have been considered but for West Ham’s! The stadium was built to stage the Athletics for the Olympics not for Football so the fact that football was considered at all was to ensure that the stadium did not become a ‘white elephant’ as has been the case in previous Olympic stadiums. I agree that retaining a track will inhibit the atmosphere although I seem to remember the old Wembley stadium still having a very good atmosphere despite a track between spectators and the pitch -and no need for binoculars!! What does surprise me is that there isnt a solution to bringing seating over the track for football and moving it back when needed for athletics? I’m sure stadiums have been designed in this way previously? In relation to West Ham filling the ground by cheap seats for school children and families-why not? What a fantastic legacy for the future and surely something that should be encouraged anyway?-plus a benefit for the community! Plans to incorporate other events and sports such as Cricket seem a very good future use of the stadium and will ensure that the stadium does not become a ‘White Elephant’. Therefore , I am fully in support of West Ham provided that it is always there for major Athletics events -as promised by the London 2012 team!

      • Andy Kay says:

        @Brian – some responses to your post.

        The difference between this stadium and the old Wembley is that the old Wembley stadium was used for one or two games a year, and then only for very special games like the FA Cup Final where the atmosphere of a full stadium for one special day out made a big difference. Compare that to a week in, week out match day, where the stadium could conceivably be less than full, it is a completely different situation. Also I believe the running track at Wembley was only installed for athletics and speedway matches and was actually removed for football games (it reduced capacity with the running tack in place).

        On the idea of ‘giving away’ tickets to local schools, although this is an admirable idea from a social point of view, I don’t see how WHU can possibly make any money from it unless they write it off on taxes as some kind of charitable donation. It certainly won’t help to pay for team salaries, and I would think making money to buy new players would be high on Brady and Golds list of things to achieve.

        As for playing cricket in the stadium don’t buy into Brady’s fantasies. The pitch is nowhere near the size needed to play cricket on. “a cricket field must have at least 16,000 square yards of grass area. A more realistic test-match stadium would have more than 20,000 square yards of grass (having a straight boundary of about 80m). In contrast an association football field needs only about 9,000 square yards of grass, making it impossible to play international cricket matches unless the stadium was specifically built for cricket” (Wikipedia). And this is without the running track, which incidentally West Ham will (apparently) be contractually obligated to retain.

    • Andy Kay says:

      The story is that West Ham will look at having removable seats on the running track, but nobody is sure of how this will be achieved or what the additional cost will be.

      As a Tottenham fan, I am one of the ones that heaved a sigh of relief when it was announced that West Ham’s bid was the winner, but the burden on the club to make money and on the taxpayers of Newham that are basically financing this deal may be unbearable for all concerned.

  4. brn442 says:

    It may be the best of all scenarios.

    West Ham gets a stadium close where they actually are. If they can put temporary seating over the tracks as recently proposed, even better.

    Credit to Spurs sticking to their guns of wanting a stadium sans a running track; hopefully (impossible as it looks) they can get something that’s actually in North London.

    And the UK Olympic Committee gets to keep their athletic “legacy promise” – in the true English tradition of keeping promises just for the sake of it.

    • The Gaffer says:

      brn442, but in some ways, everyone loses. West Ham gets a stadium that’s far too big for their fanbase. And how are those temporary seats going to look at a stadium which is their permanent home? Spurs miss out on a ground that would have been perfect for them (other than fan opposition). And now they’re stuck in North London with no Plan B. The Olympic Committee gets an athletics track that not a lot of people care about. Perhaps the only winner in this is Crystal Palace who now may be able to move from Selhurst Park to Crystal Palace.

      Cheers,
      The Gaffer

      • brn442 says:

        Indeed Gaffer. I should have said – within the context of the British OC wanting to keep the Olympic Stadium with a running track as a non-negotiable criterion.

        The British Olympic Committee refusing to even consider a rebuilt athletics centre at Crystal Palace as a good faith alternative just for the sake of a virtuous, literal “promise” to the IOC, which has its own history of corruption and greed, is a bit frustrating.

      • Pakapala says:

        Not so sure about Spurs having no plan B. Didn’t they get the green light to build their new stadium a few months ago. How they jump at the Olympic stadium pretending to have no other alternatives even though their fans protested this move is a puzzle to me.
        As for the stadium being too big for West Ham fanbase, that is assuming the club has no ambition to grow beyond the fanbase they currently have. If the other London clubs in the EPL can grow their fanbase why not West Ham? I still don’t see how having a stadium with a capacity bigger than your attendance a loss.

        • Andy Kay says:

          The alternative project for Tottenham (the Northumberland Park Development Project or NDP) would cost millions more than the Olympic Stadium site – I don’t have the numbers in front of me right now – due to the infrastructure already being in place in Stratford, whereas the NDP would have be started from scratch. Apparently the actual stadium rebuild on the OS site is fairly easy and quick, but to start on a piece of land to build a stadium from the ground up is what eats up the costs. So far nothing has been greenlighted by the borough of Haringey.

  5. QPR4Me says:

    I must say that the idea that Triesman put across that the PL are a selfish bunch of bullies, led by a pillock, seems to be more than justified by this proposal. There are (used to be) rules that stopped clubs from trampling all over their neighbours. It now seems that if you are a PL side, aided and abetted by your local council leader (of whom questions must be asked) you can do what you like and to Hell with the local side that is Leyton Orient. This decision will probably destroy them but, at least West Ham will have the best stadium in the Championship!!

  6. trickybrkn says:

    I’m sick of this attitude that the stadium is too big for its fanbase put out there by the gaffer. If I’m not mistaken EPL Talk posted a map of London team fan bases… and in that Map one of the highest populations was West Ham. If the ambition of the team is matched on the field the seats will fill themselves. At present we are a bounce team. Fair enough, but West Ham have always produced some the best players in England and continue to do so. If they retain those players and bring in fellow quality they will easily be a team looking at a top 7 finish each year. That’s not diluted, that’s historical fact. The base is there, it just needs to be energized. West Ham at present is the fourth best selling kit in England, the fanbase is there.! end of…

    Speak all you like about present form, but look at any club outside the big money, and you can say the same.

    I love Upton Park, but realize that to move forward we needed this now, and there was no other option. This is the most ambition shown from the club in my lifetime, and say what you will about our owners and management, but they have pulled us out of massive debts generated by a hyper economy and the former Icelandic owners and they care about the community. As shown by Newham teaming up with the Hammers to win this bid.

    As for Obama, he’d appreciate the getting things done attitude against the cat calls of the naysayers.

    But of course Spurs now will come back with a lawsuit, and bung this thing up for longer then it should be, costing English tax payers even more money… The outline to get the stadium has been clear since London won the bid… West Ham followed the wishes, Spurs didn’t -get over it.

    and NO we will forever be West Ham United… and forever blowing bubbles… and maybe THIS time fortune won’t be hiding.

  7. Andy Kay says:

    Speaking as a Spurs fan I sincerely hope that Levy doesn’t start a lawsuit and starts to find other options for a new 60,000 capacity stadium that is at least located in North London.

    But speaking as someone that as an 11 year old kid watched the 1964 West Ham United side parade the FA cup down East Ham high Street in an open top bus, I hope that they make a big success out of this move. Oh and that they get rid of that obnoxious Karren Brady.

    • Trickybrkn says:

      You expect anyone to take you seriously when you say you grew up in East London and support the Spuds? Man U, maybe… but East london and Spurs. You must have some battle scars. I have family that lived in East London during the war and moved out just after… They are all still West Ham. Claret and Blue till they die, and they pass it on… What the hell what wrong with you?

  8. Andy Kay says:

    @Trickybrkn

    My Dad and his dad were both staunch Spurs supporters from North London. When I was a kid I went with both of them and stood on the terraces at WHL. I lived about a 15 minute walk from Upton Park and only went there when Tottenham were playing (you could see the glow of the floodlights and hear the crowd from my back yard). Still at least I saw few more bits of silverware end up in N17 than that one FA Cup parade ;-)

    So no family problems, but I learned to take care of myself at school because of my allegiance . :-)

  9. loganXI says:

    I’m torn on the situation. I hate the idea of the running track being there, and leaving the Boleyn, but as was said by another commenter, it’s a way to move forward [hopefully] and that is a better sign than the previous owners.

  10. Leo Hallihan says:

    I can’t Believe that 3 people….ONLY 3 PEOPLE can decide the future of our club. Any real West Ham Fan will not want to move from Upton Park to that soul less shithole. There is nothing wrong with Upton Park. For a few quid the capacity can be taken up to 40 000 plus. And that is big enough for us. If we move to that stadium our gates will drop to around 20 000 within 2 years because no one will want to go to a 3rd filled stadium full of unintrested school children.Has anyone ever been to a Kid for a quid night at Upton Park ? O’Sullivan and Gold are 2 chancers that claim to be West Ham fans..This is Bullshit. Ask any Birmingham City fan about those two. And as for that Obnoxious Bitch Brady. We do not want her involved with our club. A few months ago she suggested that we change our name to West Ham Olympic…Enough Said. I can’t understand why we are letting this happen. Why cant some ex players and high profile fans stand up to this and tell those 3 chancers to piss off as the ordinary fans who oppose this are ignored. Sorry about the bad language. But I’m really pissed off about this.

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