The dreams prove too big for the small club
West Ham ditched their iconic Boleyn Ground in 2016 in favour of the bigger London Stadium, as the club’s hierarchy looked to capitalize on the greater capacity of the former Olympic Stadium which boasts 57,000 seats. According to online sportsbook news, owners David Sullivan and David Gold decided on the move as part of their reinvigoration strategy of the club, as a redesign of the club crest was soon followed, along with other changes.
However, now the stadium is proving to be costly for West Ham; they’re paying 2.5m rent per season to the operators London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) and E20, but the six-figure fee isn’t enough to cover the staging of the games themselves.
The chief executive of LLDC, Lyn Garner, highlighted some of the items that he perceives to be the issue with the renting arrangement with the club. It’s worth noting the West Ham owners and the stadium operators have had a series of disagreements before as to how the ground should be run.
“What is really driving the problems here are the low rents paid by the concessionaires, particularly West Ham,” said Garner. “I’ve got to say the elephant in the room is the fee that they pay us in the usage cost does not cover the event-day costs and that’s before we go anywhere near a commercial advantage. It simply does not cover the costs of running the events on a day-to-day basis.”
The club’s restructuring plan hasn’t been working out so far
The reshaping plan didn’t materialize as well as the club’s hierarchy had hoped. As soon as they switched to the London Stadium in the 2016/17 season, West Ham’s performances started to dwindle. It was visible to all of the Hammers’ supporters that the players didn’t play the same way they did just the year before (2015/16), when they finished 7th in the Premier League under then manager Slaven Bilic – a former West Ham player himself.
Their first Premier League campaign at the London stadium (2016/17) saw them finish in 11th place on the table, while last season it was even worse as they barely managed to get enough points for a 13th-spot finish.
And with the club now facing financial concerns relating to their renting disagreement with the stadium’s operators, it blatantly shows the ambitious plan of moving to the new ground didn’t achieve the desired result. The economics don’t work and neither are the on-pitch results favourable.
After four games this season, West Ham are at the bottom of the Premier League following four straight defeats under new manager Manuel Pellegrini – the man that won the championship in 2013/14 with Man City. We’re sure they’ll manage to bounce back as the season progresses, mainly thanks to Hammers’ immense support. Bet with online sportsbooks in UK on West Ham to finish the season in the top half of the table.