London-based football club Chelsea FC is reportedly considering demolishing its historic Stamford Bridge stadium to build a new state-of-the-art arena on the same site.
According to reports, Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali, co-controlling owners of the club, are in talks over the ambitious stadium project. The new stadium would reportedly hold at least 55,000 fans, making it one of the best arenas in Europe.
The current Stamford Bridge can only accommodate 40,000 supporters, putting Chelsea at a disadvantage compared to the other ‘Big Six’ clubs. However, the earliest possible move-in date for the new stadium is 2030.
The proposed $2.1 billion stadium project would involve either redeveloping Stamford Bridge or building a new stadium on the existing site. While building a new stadium is said to be the most realistic option, final decisions have yet to be made.
The club is currently in talks with the Chelsea Pitch Owners and waiting to see if their $70 million bid to buy land next to Stamford Bridge has been successful.
If the new stadium is built on the existing site, the Blues would need to find a temporary home while the construction is underway, and Wembley and Craven Cottage are said to be possible options.
Relocation to a new site remains the least popular option among fans, with owners Boehly and Clearlake Capital making it clear that it would only happen with the CPO’s approval. Chelsea fans and the CPO reportedly prefer to build a new stadium on the existing site or redevelop Stamford Bridge, like Liverpool did with Anfield.
However, redevelopment could involve closing off parts of the stadium while stands are being rebuilt, causing disruptions to supporters on matchdays. While the project is complicated and requires careful consideration, CPO chair Chris Isitt said they share the common goal of having the best stadium in London.