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Wednesday, 24 September 2008

image for West Ham & Tottenham To Groundshare After 2012 Olympics
Olympic Stadium home for Hammers and Spurs?

London rivals West Ham and Tottenham are involved in preliminary discussions with the government about a possible groundshare situation after the 2012 London Olympics.

The Olympic Stadium, currently under construction, is expected to cost around £525million, and will be the centrepiece of the Games, with all athletics events taking place there.

After the Games are over, however, the future of the stadium is unclear, and ministers have been meeting to discuss the possible uses for the brilliant facility. Enter the two debt-ridden clubs.

Spurs have, for a long time, been looking to move to a new stadium, and the Hammers aim to sell their decrepit Upton Park ground to developers, and to move into the Olympic Stadium with the aid of a government grant.

Just this week, the Hammers were hit by a £30million fine after the FA ruled against them in the Carlos Tevez affair, and the club is rapidly sinking under the enormous weight of their debts.

Fans are not happy though.

The two teams are particularly ardent rivals, and would not take easily to sharing. Even worse, is that Leyton Orient and Saracens rugby club have also been mentioned in dispatches as further tenants, and, if either of those two move in, the new stadium could soon start to get 'rather crowded'.

Another factor that might scupper the deal, is that the Olympic stadium will, by definition, be a far less intimate place to watch football. Both Upton Park and White Hart Lane are old-fashioned temples, where the players can feel the fans breathing down their necks as they charge down the wings. A running track between fans and players is hardly likely to suit either club. Or the Os or Saracens, for that matter.

Consultations are ongoing, with the next stage of debate likely to happen in November.

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The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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