Spurs ‘could play at Wembley until New Year’ after delays to new WHL

White Hart Pain! Tottenham’s move to new ground is delayed AGAIN due to ‘critical’ safety issues as they trigger FA payment to stay at Wembley for rest of the season

  • Tottenham Hotspur were due to play just one match at Wembley Stadium
  • That was to come this weekend in the Premier League when they take on Fulham
  • But now north London club could face not moving into new ground until 2019
  • Spurs have confirmed games against Liverpool and Cardiff will be at Wembley
  • Testing and commissioning has revealed issues with critical safety systems
  • The officially titled ‘Tottenham Hotspur Stadium’ will cost £1bn when complete

Tottenham’s move into their new stadium has been put back until the end of October at best after problems with the £850million ground’s safety system.

Spurs admit they do not know when their 62,062-seat home will be ready and on Monday night they switched two more games –  against Liverpool in September and Cardiff City the following month – to their temporary home of Wembley.

The NFL fixture between the Seattle Seahawks and the Oakland Raiders has also been moved and the venue for Spurs’ match with Manchester City on October 28 is uncertain too with another NFL game taking place at Wembley that day. 

Construction work on the new White Hart Lane Stadium has fallen behind schedule

Spurs look set to continue playing their home games at Wembley until at least 2019


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SPURS’ CALENDAR  

August 27: Test Event – CANCELLED

September 1: Test Event – CANCELLED

September 15: vs Liverpool – Moved to Wembley

October 6: vs Cardiff City – Moved to Wembley

October 14: NFL: Seattle Seahawks vs Oakland Raiders – Moved to Wembley

October 28: vs Manchester City – ‘Venue TBC’

November 24: vs Chelsea – Unknown

Spurs chairman Daniel Levy said on Monday night: ‘We know this will be disappointing for all our season-ticket holders, premium members and our fans worldwide. We appreciate the support our partner the NFL has shown since the extent of this issue became evident on Tuesday.

‘At the start of the project we asked for your support during what we knew would be a complex and challenging build and now we ask for your continued patience and forbearance.’

Spurs had hoped to open the stadium’s doors for the first time for Liverpool’s visit on September 15, with work going on around the clock in an effort to ensure they hit their proposed date.

But on Monday they revealed ‘recent testing and commissioning has now shown issues with the critical safety systems’.

Tottenham are meeting construction partners Mace and contractors working on the stadium to work out a new timetable for opening.

The Tottenham Hotspur Stadium has taken shape over the summer but it will not be ready in time for its proposed first game against Liverpool

TOTTENHAM STATEMENT 

‘Following the release of the Premier League fixtures for the 2018-19 season, we announced that, barring any significant issues with the final stages of stadium completion, our match against Liverpool on 15 September would be the first match in our new stadium. Recent testing and commissioning has now shown issues with the critical safety systems.

‘Urgent follow-up meetings with Mace and the trade contractors are now taking place. We are reviewing the situation and planned timetable to rectify and re-test, after which we shall be in a better position to outline a revised timetable.

‘The delays created by these difficulties mean that we can no longer hold the necessary Test Events on 27 August and 1 September. These will need to be rescheduled to take place ahead of any first official match at the new stadium in order to achieve the safety licence.

‘In the meantime, therefore, our upcoming Premier League matches against Liverpool (September 15) and Cardiff City (October 6) will be switched to Wembley, as will the NFL match scheduled for 14 October.’

Their next home match after the Manchester City game, for which Spurs say the venue is ‘to be decided’, is a London derby against Chelsea on November 24. 

At least one Champions League home game will also have to be moved. Spurs could play their group games at Wembley before moving to their new stadium if they qualify for the knockout stages.

Domestically, the EFL are set to allow them to switch their Carabao Cup ties to away matches if they are drawn at home in the early rounds.

Tottenham will face Fulham at Wembley this weekend but it was hoped that would be the only home game Mauricio Pochettino’s side would have to play away from their new home.

Daniel Levy has triggered a payment to the FA to continue using Wembley until 2019

The NFL’s Mark Waller said: ‘Everyone has been so excited about the prospect of playing in the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and I know all at the club are very disappointed, but determined to clear this final hurdle.

‘We totally understand the issue. We shall continue to work with them towards making our future games at Spurs a huge success. We are very excited about our long-term partnership.’

The vast challenge of building a new stadium in just over 12 months had threatened to delay the opening even before Monday’s discovery of problems.

Spurs have faced a number of logistical challenges in their ambitious attempt to build a new stadium on the same site as their old one – the only club to have constructed a new ground on the existing land. 


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