» Sports » West Ham chosen to finalise Olympic Stadium deal

West Ham chosen to finalise Olympic Stadium deal

December 05, 2012 22:03 IST
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

English Premier League soccer club West Ham United have been chosen as the leading bidder to move into the Olympic Stadium but commercial terms must still be negotiated, London mayor Boris Johnson said on Wednesday.

A fall-back option excluding soccer is also being developed should the deal with West Ham fall through after what has been a lengthy process to find an anchor tenant for the 430 million pounds stadium.

"I hope the detailed negotiations with West Ham can succeed," Johnson said.

"But I am determined that any deal should protect the interests of taxpayers who have paid for the stadium and would have to pay more for adaptations to make it suitable for football," he added.

West Ham want to convert the stadium into a 60,000-seater venue with retractable seating to go over the athletics track. Its capacity was 80,000 during this year's Olympics.

Sharing the costs of conversion and ensuring taxpayers stand to benefit from any increase in the value of the club following the move are the main stumbling blocks in the way of a deal.

The Olympic Stadium, centrepiece of the London Games, was funded by public money.

West Ham have played at the Boleyn Ground, often referred to as Upton Park, in east London since 1904.

The club welcomed the decision made by the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC), a public body chaired by the mayor.

"We are dedicated to West Ham United and the stadium for the long haul," West Ham co-chairmen David Sullivan and David Gold said in a statement.

"We are now committed to working with the LLDC in full consultation with our supporters to finalise our plans to make the stadium our home."

Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

Get Rediff News in your Inbox:
Source: source
© Copyright 2020 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

India tour of Australia 2020

India's tour of Australia 2020