March 11 – Tottenham Hotspur have confirmed a move-in date for their new home after almost two full seasons at Wembley and a string of delays that have bloated the bill for the club’s new stadium.
Spurs’s opening match and first competitive game at their new 62,000-capacity stadium will be against either Brighton or Crystal Palace in the first week of April. However, the stadium will first stage two test matches at the end of the month to satisfy the safety requirements.
“In order to achieve a formal safety certificate for fixtures to be held at the new stadium, we are required to hold two Test Event matches with increasing levels of attendances,” read a club statement. “The two matches we have scheduled will provide an exciting opportunity to see the new stadium, support our lads in the academy, watch our legends take to the pitch and familiarise yourself with your matchday route.”
The test events will feature a Spurs U-18s match against Southampton on March 24 and a Legends match on March 30. The stadium will operate with a reduced capacity for both test events: 30,000 for the U-18 match and 45,000 for the Legends match.
The inauguration in the first week of April also means that Tottenham will welcome the Champions League to their new ground in April. The London club defeated Dortmund 4-0 on aggregate in the round of sixteen of the Champions League to return to the last eight of the competition for the first time in eight years. The quarter final legs have been scheduled for April 9/10 and April 16/17 with the draw to be made on March 15.
Tottenham should have moved into their new home, built on the site of their historic White Hart Lane venue, at the start of the season, but construction was delayed and the club were forced to stage their home games at Wembley for a second season running. The new stadium, which will also stage NFL game, has a price tag of more than £750 million. Club chairman Daniel Levy has boasted that the stadium would “redefine sports and entertainment experiences.”
Contact the writer of this story, Samindra Kunti, at moc.l1573776094labto1573776094ofdlr1573776094owedi1573776094sni@o1573776094fni1573776094