So the last few weeks West Ham fans have been very vocal over how they feel about the move to the Olympic Stadium; some good and some bad.
I feel the move for West Ham to the Olympic Stadium will be fantastic for the club and a move that is right to help the club move forward. With the capacity of the Boleyn Ground being 35,016, the Olympic Stadium nearly doubles that at 60,000, matching the Emirates Stadium. During our last full season in the Premier League, West Ham earned £81m which made us the ninth highest earning club in the Premier League, only £7m behind Manchester City.
Around £18m of this revenue came from match days at the Boleyn. As previously stated the Olympic Stadium has the same capacity as the Emirates, and Arsenal earn £95m match day revenue. I am not saying we will match the revenue of the Emirates but we should come close to what Spurs earn at White Hart Lane which is £43m which means a lot more money generated by the club from stadium tickets alone. This would surely mean more readily available match day tickets and more special offers for families so that all can come and enjoy a West Ham match day together.
The stadium would not only compare well to Premier League top flight clubs but also those in other parts of Europe, meaning it would be a key venue for competitions. Generating more income would mean more money available to put back into the club which would mean a bigger, stronger club that could compete well in the transfer market.
What bigger draw can there be for any player than to play at a fantastic stadium and for a club that is not stuck in the past and wanting to move forward? Reducing the costs by moving from the Boleyn to a rented stadium would not only provide more cash flow for transfers, but could attract other potential investors which Gold and Sullivan have openly stated they are seeking.
Many people discussing the move to the Olympic Stadium on social media sites are already voicing concerns about the change in atmosphere during matches without a match being played. But surely as fans we are responsible for creating the atmosphere? We should be singing as loudly as possible whether we are at Upton Park, the Olympic Stadium or any other ground in the league.
Regarding the criticisms being made are mainly regarding the distance of seating from the pitch, plans have been made for retractable seating to combat this concern and the position of the seating was not an issue during the Olympic events when the crowd was deafening.
As a lifelong West Ham fan, I do not wish to disregard our past, the memories or achievements that have happened at Upton Park but it is important that we start to create a new legacy and future for the club. Progression is vital to ensure the security of the club rather than the yo-yoing and uncertainty of recent years.