A New Ground?
I have listed out some points of discussion that interest me as a Chelsea fan of nearly 50 years and I thought I would throw these into the discussion arena to see what other Chelsea fans think and believe.
The first of these is the subject of a new ground and a couple of suggestions for such:
Firstly the desire and need for a new ground. Now I think we do need a new stadium with 60-70,000 seats as obviously does the Chelsea board. If we would fill it at 70,000 I don`t know but I think some games we could. For most games against average teams I still reckon we would get 50,000+ or so as most league games are even now sold out as are the more attractive CL games, like Shakhtar.
The Chelsea board would know how many season ticket applications there are but of which I can get no information by googling for this, so publically one is in the dark on this statistic. But we would certainly get above 50K I would think and regularly.
I also think the CPO should relax their stance a little (if they have not already been bought out by shareholders who are sympathetic to a move away). I have no personal "thing" about holding on to Stamford Bridge if it can be replaced witha super new stadium of 60-70K spectators. I believe that the CPO, who cannot represent the vast majority of Chelsea fans, should not impose their opinions on the rest of the fans and block any viable move away from Stamford Bridge.
I also think the 5 mile limit that I believe they have or want is nonsense as most Chelsea fans that go to the Bridge would not live within 5 miles anyway. Obviously it should not be Milton Keynes or Walthamstow but 5 miles is too limiting. I live abroad and when I can get to the Bridge I want to be able to get a ticket and not be faced with "Sold out" signs.
It was a shame we could not get Battersea, which would have been ideal and iconic as well, especially as we could have called the ground "The Power Station" which is a really cool name for a team`s ground, especially as we are the European Champions and can live up to the name.
So where is the space in west London for this new stadium? I don`t know. Earls Court would be ok I suppose but there is no concrete information coming out about this as a site.
But what about Twickenham Rugby Ground?
I read this a couple of years back somewhere that the club were looking into this in terms of renting it from the Rugby association or whatever they are called. 70,000 seats, about 8 miles from the current ground, not well served by a tube link but there are a couple of British Rail stations nearby and crowd ingress and egress obviously isn`t a problem as it is being done with every rugby game there.
The local residents may state objections of course as I don`t believe they use it as often as a usual Premier League ground would do (?) but then they also stage events there like Rolling Stones concerts so maybe my assumption on this is incorrect. There is also a lot of open space around the ground if you google map it. If your see the adverts recently for the rugby on Sky the ground looks impressive from the outside and the inside as well.
I believe this would be a very good option for Chelsea although I would like the club to buy the ground rather than rent it and maybe lease it back to the Rugby people, rather than the other way round, although that probably would not occur.
Could the grounds be simply swapped? Probably not as I believe they do sell out for rugby matches. And then we could sell Stamford Bridge to QPR! They want a 45K stadium - just move into Stamford Bridge with 42K after Chelsea have moved elsewhere - problem solved for them! But then you would probably get a large section of their supporters saying "no" because of the history of the ground, which would be short-sighted of them in my opinion as QPR are not Arsenal or Tottenham. Or Fulham and QPR could ground share Stamford Bridge?
Even worse now for some biased Fulham fans one can suppose! But the fans of these clubs that would object to such should simply change their minds and realize maybe that it might be a simple solution for all involved and not get all "emotional" about it. I thought I would just throw this out as an option and see if anyone bites, but I am expecting the bites to be negative from QPR and Fulham fans.
But Twickenham I like the look of!