The London Stadium Pitch surround debate has descended into a public decision about colour on whether it should be Green, Claret, Sky Blue or Navy Blue when possibly it should be about the taxpayer funds which could have been saved.
Politicians love to quote that West Ham got the deal of the century with their £2.5m index-linked rent for the stadium so it seems bizarre that the stadium owners would not bite the Hammers board’s hand off with the offer of a £200,000 saving off their annual stadium running costs.
In some ways, the colour is irrelevant as it still cost the stadium owners £200,000 to put in the current green pitch surround after the Athletics finishes after it rejected an offer of funding of £200,000 to put in a Claret one before the summer. The pitch surround needs to be replaced each season.
The same could be said about the long stalemate over the increased capacity issue. With up to £300,000 of catering income per home game at the London Stadium, a capacity increase of 3,000 to 60,000 could bring in an extra £300,000 of catering income per season while an increase to 66,000 could bring in a £900,000 increase in the stadium’s catering income. The increase in capacity could also bring higher rates for advertising and sponsorship deals for the stadium owners desperate for cash.
Invariably it is the taxpayer who loses out on these politically motivated decisions while the media love to smear West Ham with every article.
To be honest I find the decision baffling not that we aren’t being allowed to change the surround colour but that if Slav thinks it is confusing for players not to know where the boundary is and to over/under hit passes. To me this would give us an advantage over visiting teams we would adapt and get used to the width of the pitch and playing on it and if opponents would find it tough then that should make our life easier in terms of getting results.
It doesn’t take much brains to work out the players are not enjoying playing at the stadium as results show this,it’s ok for a team to come to a one off game as an away team and play well but the players clearly feel disconnected to our fans and all slav is trying to do is give the illusion that the huge void around the pitch is smaller