Chelsea could now face a nightmarious four years away from Stamford Bridge while their new stadium is being built,
Chelsea had previously announced plans to move into their £500 million 60,000-seat in time for the 2021-22 season. But that is looking highly unlikely, meaning the Premier League leaders could spend four years with a ground to really call home.
While Wembley remains the preferred option for the Blues, Chelsea say they are continuing to assess venues inside the M25. That includes a potential groundshare at West Ham’s London Stadium.
Minutes from a fans’ forum released this week stated:
‘The club said it was still assessing requirements and considering options regarding a temporary stadium location.
‘There are many factors the club has to weigh up when considering where we play while the new stadium is being built. There are a number of potential temporary venues within the M25.’
Chelsea officials have reportedly considered over a dozen different options that even include a temporary move to Reading to share the Madejski Stadium.
One possible destination that was talked about earlier was a move to England’s home of Rugby, Twickenham but that option has been reportedly left ‘dead’ by opposition from local politicians and residents.
Another option close to home is West Ham’s London Stadium. The potential for a 66,000 seater capacity is interesting to the Blues, but the bad blood between the two sets of supporters makes this a very unlikely option for Chelsea.
Why is why Wembley is viewed as the best option, although even that would not come without its own problems. Rivals Tottenham’s deal to play a single season at the 90,000-seater stadium was met by objections from residents earlier this year.
However, Chelsea would be able to appease local residents by playing games at a reduced capacity of 50,000 instead of the 90,000 capacity of the stadium.
There is also the possibility of using multiple venues during the four-year homelessness period — although the Premier League require clubs to fulfill all of their home games in a single season at the same ground.