West Ham United will today be announced as preferred tenants for the Olympic Stadium, a move which will instantly catapult the struggling London club towards the top of the Premier League income list.

Whether West Ham can fill the stadium or not, the Olympic Stadium was built with a sustainable future in mind. As such, the money West Ham United can expect to receive from non-matchday activities (such as conferencing) is likely to dwarf anything they can dream of achieving from ticket sales.

The location of the Olympic Stadium coupled with it’s impressive transport links also makes West Ham’s new home the ideal choice for stadium bands, another key source of additional revenue the Hammers will be keen to exploit.

The Hammers will receive the huge boost in income for the pathetically low price of just £15m. They won’t own the stadium of course, but with a 99 year lease and affordable rent, why would anyone want to shell out £500m to build one of their own?

For the Hammers, this is a dream come true. They’re getting a world class stadium capable of generating huge sums of money for one third of a Fernando Torres. But is this fair for the rest of English football?

Arsenal spent £500m building The Emirates, a cost they’ve met through cautious spending and the continued sale of key players. It was money well-spent by the Gunners, their new home generates over £90m a season in ticket sales alone, but the rewards came at a cost. As it does for every other club.

Whenever a team starts to prioritise investment in the stadium over the team, there’s going to be some repercussions. For Arsenal, the trade-off has been a 7 year run without silverware as key players depart and the profits are used to repay investors.

Ken Bates did a similar thing at Elland Road. Key player after key player was sold to fund new executive boxes and conferencing facilities, all the while, Leeds United struggled on the pitch. 8 years since he first took over the club, Leeds United – a club which should generate more income than anyone else outside the EPL – is exactly where they were when Ken Bates first took control.

For most clubs, this is how football works. No supporter wants to experience the unsuccessful run which often occurs when their owners divert funds away from the football team, but most clubs aren’t handed £500m stadiums on a silver platter.

That’s not through lack of trying either. Both Arsenal and Leeds United have attempted to secure taxpayer financing in the last few years. Arsenal wanted a loan to help build the Emirates, while Leeds have tried to negotiate deals to repurchase Elland Road and Thorp Arch. Those two properties combined wouldn’t have cost the taxpayer a tenth of what the Olympic Stadium did, in fact, they’d have barely put a dent in the £120m taxpayers are set to fork out so West Ham can have retractable seating installed.

But like Arsenal, Leeds United were denied loans from the taxpayer and had to do things the hard way. Like Arsenal, Leeds United have had to suffer the consequences of stadium redevelopment, just like almost every other team in the history of football has had to do. That was fair enough, right up until the point the government started handing out multi-million pound stadiums to other clubs.

The multi-billionaire owners and their blank cheques have made things difficult enough, how are the rest of us supposed to compete against the Manchester City’s (another taxpayer built stadium) and West Ham’s when hundreds of millions of pounds is being spent to aid them?

I know this comes across as an incredibly bitter rant from a frustrated football supporter, and that’s mostly because it is. But sport is supposed to reward success. No disrespect to West Ham but the reason they don’t play in a world class stadium is because they’re not a world class team. That’s how it should be.

Like it or not, most of the teams who do play in world class stadiums – Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool – achieved success the right way. They didn’t get government hand-outs, nor did a multi-billionaire buy their success. They achieved success, reaped the rewards and built their stadiums with the proceeds. Forgive me for thinking that’s how football should work.

  • PT

    Pathetic jealous nonsense. There is no viable alternative. If the Olympic stadium was 2 miles from Elland Road, I don’t think anyone would complain if Leeds put in a bid for it. At least West Ham have a chance of filling it unlike Leeds. Oh , I forgot, it’s a protest against Uncle Ken that means your ground is half empty most of the time.

    • Pete

      jealous nonsense? You’re getting a £500m stadium you couldn’t possibly afford any other way. How is that not unfair on every other club in football?

      • Did you post the same when Manchester City got their stadium given to them? No thought not….

        • whether or not anyone complained about another injustice is irrelevant to this one. Did this website even exist in 2003?

          • TSS

            No we didn’t, TSS started in 2008. It’s like Gaddafi moaning because no one stopped Henry VIII from killing people.

    • Scottishwhite

      West Ham don’t fill Upton Park every week, so how Gold and co. think they’re going to fill the Olympic Stadium is beyond me. There is a viable alternative, its called Tottenham, or perhaps more of an effort could have been made to get Rugby Union clubs like Saracens involved.

      • Steve

        Why is anyone worried if West ham will fill it or not? the money will come in from other sources. Tottenham you say? they are in north London the stadium is in EAST London.

        • Scottishwhite

          It matters if its full because when the Olympic stadium is seen on TV half empty it is embarrassing for the government, the country and those who were supposed to be ensuring a viable legacy for the Olympic games. A half empty stadium given to a club which sees finishing mid table as a major achievement and is unlikely to ever achieve more, apart from the odd cup run, appears to reflect less of a legacy and more the startling level of incompetency surrounding the bidding process. At least Man City put their stadium to good use.

          • Steve

            You live in your own little world and think progress isn’t possible. Read this to give you some idea of what could happen to West Ham and stop fretting about us. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/west-ham/9722711/West-Hams-Olympic-Stadium-move-can-create-a-super-club-in-east-London.html

          • Scottishwhite

            Of course progress is possible but without a far more wealthy backer than Gold moving to a 60,000 seat stadium isn’t going to make them into a top 6 team. It will take them years to create a group of 60,000+ people willing to go watch them every week. The stadium makes them a more attractive proposition but not if they cant fill it. Furthermore the point about the ground having good transport links is ridiculous and irrelevant, people don’t go watch football because there is a regular bus or train to the ground. Even if West Ham do secure a wealthy backer, the competition in the Premiership is so great you could probably still end up getting no further than the Europa league

  • Max

    > Like it or not, most of the teams who do play in world class stadiums – Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool – achieved success the right way.

    In the 80s a cartel was established, referred to as “the big 5″, which included the 3 clubs you mention, plus Everton and Tottenham, and which proceeded to suck the lion’s share of the money out of the then current TV deals. There have been subsequent deals go through, and mysteriously some clubs always seem to be at the centre of things when the rules change (for example the funding changes for European football when the champions league came along, and the extensions which allowed entry for non-champions to the Champions League came along with timing which unsurprisingly benefited certain clubs. Manipulation of the European system felt like it would perpetuate Manchester United as a one club “old firm” until Abramovich turned up (although Jack Walker had made a similar splash by buying the league in the 90s).

    So I disagree with the “right way” argument. The system has been up for manipulation from within for some time.

    But I do strongly agree that my taxes shouldn’t subsidise football clubs I despise. And when you say “no disrespect to West Ham”, try asking the average West Ham supporter for their opinion of Leeds (and, generally, of the North). The stadium isn’t even in West Ham – Orient are closer. This has been allowed to happen because so many of the London press support West Ham. They should have been relegated or docked points over the Tevez affair (and that would have tipped them over financially as well), but nothing happened then, and this has just been waved through now.

    • Me

      The stadium isn’t in West Ham? Do you mean the one that is in the London Borough of Newham which is West Ham and East Ham combined. Do you mean the stadium that is almost opposite the still standing old West Ham Town Hall? Do you mean the stadium that was accessed during the Olympis from WEST HAM tube station? You’re either lost or a sad Spurs fan.

    • Orient may be closer but they actually play in the London Borough of Waltham Forest where as the Boleyn Ground is in the London Borough of Newham which is where the Olympic Stadium is also situated so West Ham if they move will not be encroaching on Leyton Orient as they will still be playing in their own Borough whereas Orient will be encroaching on West Ham’s patch.

    • Orient may be closer but they actually play in the London Borough of Waltham Forest where as the Boleyn Ground is in the London Borough of Newham which is where the Olympic Stadium is also situated so West Ham if they move will not be encroaching on Leyton Orient as they will still be playing in their own Borough whereas Orient will be encroaching on West Ham’s patch.

  • Chandler

    Get Obamanomics out of football it is already destroying are country. There is no such thing as free lunch boys and girls!!! .

    • Leedsusa

      Oh jeezus can I not hide from this shit

    • Joe

      I’m sorry, Obamanomics? is that something you made up? I honestly have no idea what you mean, nor will anyone else on this site. If you wanna shout right wing stuff at random people you haven’t met, please go to the nearest town centre and do it there.

  • Chandler

    our country even

  • PT

    Maybe we should open up the bidding process to all 96 teams and move it to the winner.

    • Bob

      Good idea – oh the deadline has passed. Back to the drawing board PT

  • It might leave a bad taste in the mouth but I don’t see what the alternative is. It would be a ghost town of a stadium if Leyton Orient got the rights. It’s nowhere near Tottenham so they don’t deserve it. The stadium would fall into disrepair if it wasn’t given to a football club who could pay the rent and the upkeep of the stadium. Additionally, Upton Park have hosted boxing recently (Haye/Chisora) so maybe it could also be used as a future boxing venue as well?
    A further point, the taxpayers in questions are London taxpayers, so no-one in Yorkshire will be paying for this.
    I also recall that Leeds City Council was keen to discuss a possible buyout and rent back of ER & TA, but Leeds United (Ken Bates) wanted to have ownership of the stadium. The council said that was never going to happen – their idea was that LCC would own it. And that’s when Shaun Harvey ended the conversation with the council. LUFC killed that deal, not LCC and not the taxpayer.

    • TSS

      Wasn’t the original plan to reduce capacity down to 15-20,000 and keep it as a national athletics stadium? Surely that’s more of a “legacy” than handing it off to a football club who can rake mountains of cash in from it…?

    • The idea that nobody outside London will pay for this is ridiculous. Who do you think pays for all that ‘London Weighting’? We are all within the same economy.

  • Me

    It was ok for Man City was it? Good luck to them btw…. proper supporters.

    • so if you are saying it wasn’t ok for man city then how is it for west ham?

  • wjo1974

    Well all I can say as a West Ham fan is thank you Spurs and Orient. Had it not been for their complaints we would have had to buy it and your argument would have been irrelevant as it pretty much is anyway. So it is Barry Hearn and Levy you should all get on at not West Ham. As for getting a leg up for it and not having a world class team I fail to see your point, we will now be tenants and went through a due process to become tenants, the price of tenancy is decided by the owner so it is the government to blame? Other than having it sitting there empty as the worlds biggest pigeon loft the sensible thing was decided upon and that was to award the tenancy to the best option both financially, employment wise and for sustainability reasons. So is that our fault that we are the best option? Petty, childish jealous journalism, if you can call it that.

  • Colin

    Good luck to West Ham United, Proper club with proper supporters.
    If it was in our City I would jump at the chance, they are lucky enough to be as they say “in the right place at the right time”
    This article smaks of a jealous little boy, grow up and stop giving LUFC a bad name.
    If we get promoted this season (and I think we will) and we get a sugar daddy that massively bankrolls us would that be fair?…..I certainly wouldnt complain.


    This is clearly just an attempt by you to get hits on newsnow from the millions of west ham fans. Wait a minute, no it isn’t. That’s what I do on MY site to get hits from Leeds Fans. I forgot West Ham don’t have any fans. And I’m a dick.

    • yes you are

    • HF

      I’m a West Ham fan and we all hate Hammersfan as he is a thick non attending twat
      of a man. His name is Liam and he lives in Berkshire just to give you some ammo

      • TUPPA

        Tell us more my friend..

    • john

      Still a world class WANKER!!!!! MOT


      You’re not HAMMERSFAN. I’m HAMMERSFAN, and I’m not a dick. Although I do have a really small penis and like to bum dogs.

  • Dan

    Struggling to see how as tennants West Ham will reap the rewards of other money spinning events held at the stadium, surely that will go to the stadium owners.

    • Bert

      Sponsorhip, corporate, naming rights will go through the new roof!

  • Fair on the rest of english football …leave it out ..there is no fair in english football pal…pathetic sooky sooky la la from everyone because the only viable option was selected.
    ScottishW you can’t be serious tottenham in the east end not likelyand from what i’ve seen upton is packed every week pal.cheaper tickets will be offered and will get 50,000+ no worries.Jealousy is a horrible face people horrible get over it!.

  • Brian Gayle

    I’m a leeds fan mate and I even find it a bit rich taking in this way about tax payer hand outs, after all would we still exist had we not written off a massive chunk of tax payers money owed ? Good luck to West Ham I say, will be a nice new ground for us to visit next year, better than the Upton Park slum.

  • Brian Gayle

    I’m a leeds fan mate and I even find it a bit rich taking in this way about tax payer hand outs, after all would we still exist had we not written off a massive chunk of tax payers money owed ? Good luck to West Ham I say, will be a nice new ground for us to visit next year, better than the Upton Park slum.

  • DirtyLeeds

    New Stadium or no new Stadium, West Ham are and always will be, just a little club in London…

    Has anybody outside of these Isles ever even heard of them?

    • Adolph

      Ya I have – za von the vorld cup in 1966 yous bigs fool.

  • markman

    according to the daily mail,west ham are to pay £9 million a year to include,rental,merchandising,catering and naming rights revenue.hard to see how they are actually going to make money on this without almost doubling their home gates.are they entitled to all non football income? I think they will still depend on their 2 multi Billion pound owners to put subsidise them.

  • Matthew

    Speaking of stadiums, looking forward to when GFH buy back Elland Road personally, it may not be the Olympic Stadium, but its home.

  • sean carey

    Can’t we knock the whole lot down and have the cycle circuit, housing estate, and allottments back and try to forget how we had our pants pulled down and were royally rogered by seb coe and his careerist cronies.?Just a thought.

  • Lufc1979ish

    Why when times are hard didnt the government let west ham use the ground on a lease basis but all profits from other activities like concerts etc go back into the system to help the country get off its knees. After all the tax payer paid for the facilities in the first place why should a football club reap the benefits for something paid for by every person in the country.

  • chester white

    If you read the small print west ham can only make a minimal profit the rest goes to the London Olympic stadium committee for regeneration of sport .So yes they get a nice new stadium but will still only be able to sign nobody’s and play in half empty stadiums

    • The Don

      You must have trouble reading. The condition is that the West Ham owners must share any profit they make if they SELL the club. That makes no difference to operating profit. Doh!

  • Tare

    Sorry but this WU is not my interest in life at all- Olympic stadium or not well you can be for or against.

    But back to the topic; In a crest of wave it is good place to be and is there any better time to face Derby this weekend? All Moaners be prepared for this occasion….. Tare

  • Chareose

    Think you hit a nerve here mate….

  • Matthew

    I’m still confused as to why Leyton Orient want the stadium, it’s far too big for the 5 fans that support them. Confusing..

  • West Ham getting a free stadium paid for with a handout. The West Ham fans will be used to that; well they all probably live in pikey council flats and live on benefits.

    • Matthew

      Thought that was Millwall supporters?

  • gibbun

    Have you seen that nob West Ham fan has quoted half of this on his “blog”. What a tool.

    • TSS

      Yeah, I thought that was quite funny.

      • TUPPA

        Great work TSS maybe a weekly blog attacking west ham..it could catch on…someone will eventually tell us who he is..then we can take action,report him to the POLICE ect..im sure in west hams current position they will deal with the atagonising racist.

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