Chelsea considering plan to build new £2billion stadium at Stamford Bridge which would mean they would have to play away from the ground for FOUR YEARS at Craven Cottage, Twickenham or Wembley
- Chelsea are considering building a stadium that could cost up to £2billion
- The move would involve them playing away from Stamford Bridge for four years
- Possible venues for Chelsea include Craven Cottage, Twickenham or Wembley
Chelsea are considering building a stadium that could cost up to £2billion and involve them playing away from Stamford Bridge for four years, either at Fulham’s Craven Cottage, Twickenham or Wembley.
The club need to overcome several hurdles as part of a plan to bulldoze the ground that has been their home since 1905 and erect a state-of-the-art arena capable of holding 60,000 fans.
Railway and Tube lines, an underground river and an adjacent cemetery will pose challenges to owner Todd Boehly and could force the club to rotate the pitch 90 degrees to stay on the current site.
Rising material costs, traffic and noise restrictions will push up the build price, which could top £2bn by the time it is hoped to be completed in 2030, a date independent experts say is optimistic.
However, the club’s owners do not regard the predicted cost as prohibitive. They have not set a fixed stadium budget, other than to put aside funds for both its rebuild and player transfers as part of Boehly’s £4.25bn acquisition of the club last year.
Chelsea are considering building a new stadium at Stamford Bridge worth up to £2billion
Chelsea may have to play at an alternative venue for four years, such as Craven Cottage
Todd Boehly has informally approached Shahid Khan about using Fulham’s ground
It is understood that Boehly has informally approached fellow American billionaire Shahid Khan, the Fulham owner, about using his club’s ground.
One possibility is playing the majority of league games at Craven Cottage, with Champions League and category A Premier League fixtures played at Wembley or Twickenham.
Fulham are likely to be sympathetic to the request after moving to QPR’s Loftus Road while their ground was refitted in 2002. Chelsea have also approached the Rugby Football Union, who are keen to expand the number of non-rugby events held at Twickenham to boost revenues and help pay for future refurbishments.
Wembley, previously a temporary home for Tottenham, is another possible option for Chelsea
Chelsea have approached the RFU about possibly playing matches at Twickenham
The club face a minimum of four years away from Stamford Bridge should they decide to rebuild it. Boehly is determined to transform the stadium into a world-class venue, which would mean not retaining any of the current stands. It is understood Chelsea will be required to build decking over the London Overground railway line in order to demolish the East Stand. One option would be to make the decking permanent, to create more space for the new construction.
The owners also intend to dig several metres lower than the current pitch due to height restrictions. Chelsea are expected to find out this month whether they have acquired a 1.2-acre site next to the stadium for £50m. The land belongs to Stoll, a housing association which provides housing for military veterans.
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