Chelsea - A New Ground?
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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!

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Old Shed Boy Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday November 11 2012

Time: 1:15PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
Nice article, I don't know anything about london grounds but believe me, I won't say no to a 60,000 capacity stadium with a design that can extend it to 70 or 80 in future.
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11/11/2012 13:31:00

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11/11/2012 13:39:00

Good Write-up.. We really Need A 60/80 Capacity Stadium.. ASAP!!!
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11/11/2012 13:48:00

If you look at what Roman has done to the club you notice it has always been first class. If we're constructing a new stadium then it will be a landmark to be remembered. It will be something special. Ideally the land for the new ground is bought first and construction will begin. We should use SB as long as required. During the construction time the club can negotiate the best possible deal for SB redevelopment or straight sale as football ground. It is only because of the new great stadium that fans will accept a move. We all have fond memories of various lenghts of time of our beloved Stamford Bridge. It is nice to hear such forward thinking words from an older fan. I'm only 42 years a fan.
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11/11/2012 13:52:00

It's well stated! We truly deserve a stadium that's really really huge, as our rising reputation, is befitting of a bigger stadium.
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11/11/2012 13:55:00

Twickenham is the largest stadium in the world devoted solely to the sport of rugby, it is the second largest stadium in the UK after Wembley Stadium and the fifth largest stadium in Europe - be a scoop for chelsea to secure such a sground
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11/11/2012 18:21:00

we need one like the eithad and the emirates
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11/11/2012 19:11:00

I think the point of having a stadium built in a 3 mile radius I think it is, is not appease the local fans, because as you've stated, most fans won't live within that radius. It's to keep the clubs' history in tact. We want to stay in the same area, ideally a expansion of the Bridge is what we want, but apparently that can't happen, so if moving is the alternative then we should only move 'down the road'. I would hate to travel out to Reading or Slough or some place like that. All these plastic grounds outside city centres with no character. Feck that. We belong in SW6 and I would hate to leave. And thankfully I think the board recognise that. It's about keeping our character in tact. We won't be Chelsea unless we play in Chelsea!
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11/11/2012 22:33:00

Nice article,the chelsea brand is gettin bigger so we need a befittin ground for our growin reputation..i was very dissapointd we lost the bid of battersea power station,it would be great if we could get twickenham rugby ground whatever way we can
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11/11/2012 22:46:00

Hazzabee - our ground is currently in Fulham, not Chelsea. But that is not the point here - it's the team on the pitch that makes the history nothing to do with where the ground is - maybe a little bit but then I am not saying move out to Slough or Reading and neither is anyone else, least of all the Chelsea board. To buy a ground in Chelsea or Kensington would be an unnecessary and enormous investment because of the high price of land there. Earls Court for instance is I think also in Hammersmith borough. But where the ground is not that important providing it is of course not too far away, like Wimbledon faced. Battersea would have been ideal but Twickenham is also not that far down the road. It is the team that makes history and when one adds the income from 60-70,000 spectators a la Man United this only helps put a team there for the future. And if this means moving out of Stamford Bridge or Fulham then so be it. IMO they can bulldoze Stamford Bridge tomorrow if we can get a big new stadium. When I first started going in the 1960s it was a dump anyway! But I went to see and support the team and I wasn't worried about the ground or the ground's "history" - because it as such doesn't really have any - only the team.
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11/11/2012 23:00:00

OldShedBoy - yes Fulham/Chelsea/Hammersmith wherever, the point is its important for the club to stick to its roots. I'm not trying to say that your opinion is wrong, but I'm suprised that a man who's been going to the Bridge since the sixties, such as yourself, would want to see us move away from the pitch where Osgood, Harris, Tambling and Bonetti roamed. It's true that you support a club, not a badge or a stadium or a shirt. But I think it's dangerous to start changing all of that. Chelsea belong in SW6. If they move away, it could be Twickenham or it could be East London, or it could even be to Oxfordshire, either way, it wouldn't be my Chelsea. I was reading an article about Cardiff City's change from the bluebirds to the red dragons and I couldn't imagine anything worse. The identity is somewhat lost, part of the character and the history is lost. Of course it's the same club, but it's different now. Once you start changing things and getting used to the idea of change, it's a slippery slope. One minute we could be looking at a 3-mile radius, then perhaps a 10-mile radius, then perhaps we might look at the best financially beneficial options which would be on the outskirts of London. And for me that would be terrible. I want to stick as close to our roots as possible. I don't mind moving, but I would hate to move far. If the ground isn't walking distance from Fulham Broadway, or West Brompton, or Earls Court, or Gloucester Rd, or South Ken then I'm not interested. Changing stadiums is one thing. But it's a whole other issue to be changing areas. And one which I don't want to even go near.
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12/11/2012 01:52:00

i also said it long before that moving to a 60 to 80k ground is essential.I also said that CPO is going to ruin us in the long run with their over imagining pblm like roman will move cfc to russia or africa.The genuine CPO fans are very low and rare..Most of them now care is the power they hold over cfc with their just 15k shares..If cfc opens the shares for all cfc fans with out any restrictions then i dont think we will face this pblm.Lot of our fans criticized me last year for my support for moving grounds by saying i am not sentimental cfc will lose soul etc etc..But the fact remains the same After RA become a liverpool by staying in sb or make sure you will stay at the top long after RA gone by securing a new big ground..Its always going to be painful to change grounds but essential and necessary one..Anyway with CPO hell bent on the 3 mile radius i dont think cfc can ever move..Only option is earls court but that also with H&F whoring themselves and got lot of bribe from the cap&co its almost impossible for cfc to swing it around.All in all i dont think cfc will move from sb ever unless cpo is somehow persuaded to do the right think by the club and the purpose it was created.
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12/11/2012 03:25:00

By the way there will be some fans comes and tell me how we are moving in the right direction with our 255M revenue and profit this year and we are now ahead of arsenal etc etc..This is simply not true..Arsenals all major contracts are up for renewal next season..AFC will move to 300M in revenue from next season simply bcz we cant match the 40 50 50M deficit in the ground revenue..All the big teams in europe are making atleast 30M more than us in the ground..You cant just ignore it especially a man like RA is willing to build you a entirely new ground for essentially free yet we are talking too much and doubting too much about the intension and essentially ruining any chance we hav realistically to move..In another 3 to 5 yrs even if we want to move we cant bcz there will be no grounds to move..
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12/11/2012 03:43:00

Chelsea are growing in every aspect of the game. I have been following on the daily match attendance and realized that we are almost filling the bridge on every single match. I take concerns that there are last minute fans who never gets tickets and so a bigger stadium must be on the cards
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12/11/2012 08:36:00

Sorry but this is utter nonsense, Twickenham ! Cup finals had to moved for seven years to Cardiff because Rugby and locals didn't want to know. Earls Court is dead, property deals are worth alot more than football clubs , it is dead dead dead ( please nobody even mention Earls Court again) We have to keep our roots, the stadium is getting full of tourists anyway, did you see all the muppets in half and half scarves yesterday! These tourists will not go to watch us if we move somewhere *****ty like Willesden. These tourists and more and more viagoggo buying fans are not going to be loyal fans. Do you want us to become franchise united like MK Dons because if we move that is what we will be , there are no suitable sites bar one, it is called Stamford Bridge!
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12/11/2012 10:51:00

i saw an article the other day about standing potentially coming back to the prem as its works in germany ovbiously slightly different to how it used to be. that could help us to add an extra 15,000 to our capacity potentially kncok down eith the mathew harding or the shed a re build it up!!
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12/11/2012 13:19:00

there really is'nt anywhere for a stadium within 3 miles apart from Earls court and Battersea or even White City nut the first 2 are no no's and the last is earmarked for QPR
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12/11/2012 13:23:00

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12/11/2012 13:24:00

I totally agree with god1zola25 these half and half scarves should be band we support chelsea get it in my day you wouldnt dare be associated with the other team let alone wear a scarf with their name on it,as for the ground i first went to it in 77 and still do its changed massively but i believe we should look hard at redevelopment there must be a way,this is our roots, after all there was 80k once inside the old stamford bridge
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12/11/2012 14:12:00

Question here is: would you have not supported Chelsea if their ground was in Willesden (not that I am suggesting that is where we should move to - I was born and went to school there)? If the ground was in say Putney it would not have influenced me supporting and still going to the ground to see my team. the location of the ground was incidental - I started supporting Chelsea because I thought Ossie was magic - had nothing to do with the ground.
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12/11/2012 14:36:00

The point of this article is spur the Chelsea Board on to getting on with it (providing us with a 60k+ stadium) and hopefully provide them with a few ideas as to where it could be, and also to gather the opinions of the fans so that they can take these into account. Most of the replies here are in favour of moving away from the Bridge (but not too far). If Stamford Bridge could be redeveloped so that we get 60k+ spectators that would be great but it seemingly is not now an option so we have to get something else. THe idea of standing would also be good - I live in Germany and Borussia Dortmund has 70 or 80k because they allow standing - I think it is made safe due to a certain style of crush barrier and I think the technology (of such) is now there to be able to consider this, with the use of tickets as well. So that, standing areas is also an option and if it could be done then we can also stay at the Bridge.
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12/11/2012 14:42:00

And does anybody know of any sites say within a 10 mile radius, where a new ground could be built? There must be some architects or surveyors or council planners who visit this site who kight know of such a site or sites even? If so, "answers on a postcard" please to the Chelsea Board - let 'em know!
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12/11/2012 14:48:00

"might" instead of "kight"
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12/11/2012 14:49:00

@OldShedBoy there are no viable options left for chelsea to move in our own backyard mate..Battersea: This was the only good and favourable option for us but with this gone the potential other sites are EARLS COURT: Only option which wont create much controversy is earls court but H&F council got more than 100M from the devolopers cap&co So they wont allow cfc to move to earls court.Also the pblm with earls court is now the matr has gone to the high court so it wont come to a conclusion anytime soon..This saga will run on for atleast another 2 yrs before some form of conclusion or clear picture will emerge.With all these pblms i really dont think cfc can swing it around..Biggest plus point with earls court is its just a stone throw away from our sb..So cpo cant object with out looking ridiculous..2)Imperial wharf: Not big enough space to house a club like us.With cfc going for atleast 60K+ its simply not possible to employ the stadium at the site..3)White city: Very near to loftus road so QPR is currently looking to move there..Also the same pblms apply here also like could it hold 60 to 80K? Not possible..Other than these 3 i dont think any left near the 5 mile radius at all..Other possiblity Twickenham like you said...
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12/11/2012 18:26:00

OldShedBoy- im not by any means suggesting that I wouldn't support Chelsea if they moved to Twickenham, Reading or Hong Kong. I will support Chelsea no matter what, as I imagine you would. My point is that I would be utterly against moving out of the area. It wouldn't affect my support, but i wouldn't be happy about it. I think it's important that football clubs do what they can to keep the fans happy, and moving to a completely new area is the first step in doing the opposite of that. Imagine if you move house. You can move all of your furniture, you can move all of your family into your new house, but it won't feel the same if you move areas.
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12/11/2012 19:36:00

So, where could they move to? Does it mean we need to recheck the possibility of expanding the bridge?
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13/11/2012 07:53:00

@Kendemsblue Expanding SB is not possible at all..If our fans just accept it then it will be better for the clubs future..Lot of fans are just thinking that the club dont want to expand SB but the truth is we cant expand SB..Plain and simple..People who knows the difficulties about construction could easily understand the pblm..SB is too much crowded from all sides and much less space..So its simply impossible..All these SAYNOCPO guys are just trying to hang on to their useless power over cfc with their pathetic paranoid theories..What the more incredible is they believe H&F council with out any questions..They accept what ever the council tells them...H&F council got more than 100M from cap&co to let them use earls court plan..So unless CFC pay H&F council more than 100M i cant see the club could swing into our favor..Only possibility i am seeing the club moving is in some unorthodox way with further away from SB and west london.Like @oldshedboy said we need to look further up field to hav any chance of moving realistically and with out spending more than 500M to 1B on ground..
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13/11/2012 08:29:00

@sponnukumar, then if that is the case, and we all agree that to remain competitive, we need a bigger capacity since we proved that we can come back from losses and make some profits with good management. they are then to explore the remaining plots since am sure we can fill a 60-70K stadium, at a lower match day ticket price.
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15/11/2012 08:10:00

I'm not a rugby fan but I can't believe the arrogance! We buy Twickenham, the home of English Rugby then rent it back to those Rugby people??
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16/11/2012 13:18:00


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