Scottish FA agrees deal to buy Hampden Park for £5m in 2020

Hampden Park

September 12 – The Scottish Football Association (SFA) has agreed a deal to buy Hampden Park for £5 million from League Two side Queen’s Park when the existing lease of Hampden expires in summer 2020.

The debate over whether the SFA could or should afford Hampden has been on-going for over a year in Scotland with one proposal being to move major internationals and Scottish Cup semi-finals and finals to Rugby Union ground Murrayfield in Edinburgh.

Queen’s Park have owned Hampden Park in Glasgow since it was opened in 1903 and the governing body have opted to remain in the city. “The decision follows a lengthy and rigorous process that saw Hampden Park competing with BT Murrayfield to be the home of Scottish football, following the UEFA European Championships in two years’ time,” the SFA said in a statement.

Queen’s Park will now move to Lesser Hampden which will become its new registered licensed ground for all home matches.

Half of the $5 million cash purchase price of Hampden has been pledged by Glasgow businessman Lord Willie Haughey, a former Celtic director.

The decision to remain at Hampden comes with a commitment to improve the stadium infrastructure, improvements that were only ever likely to be made if the SFA owned the venue.

An improved stadium is part of the solution to bringing fans back to watching the national team. This week’s Nations League game against Albania saw just 17,000 fans watch Scotland’s 2-0 win, the lowest for a competitive Scotland home fixture since 1975. Hampden’s capacity is 52,063.

SFA chief executive Ian Maxwell said: “Our mission is to inspire a nation to love the game and having a home that we can call our own is an important part of that. It will enable us to drive investment into the game and give us the best chance to improve football in Scotland.

“While we are now committed to Hampden Park we also recognise that it needs to change.

“We have heard the fans’ views throughout the process and agree with them that we need to improve access, transport links and the overall experience. We are committed to doing that.

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