Pele not in support of West Ham’s 2012 Olympic Stadium bidJanuary 22nd, 2011 - 6:20 pm ICT by ANI
London, Jan 22 (ANI): Football legend Pele is not in support of West Ham’s bid to move to the 2012 Olympic Stadium.
“I support Tottenham’s proposal because, as a player, you need to feel the passion and intensity of the fans. The best stadiums connect the fans with the pitch and, if you lose that, you lose something that really matters - and, eventually, the fans,” he said.
The three-time World Cup winner was referring to West Ham’s plans to retain the running track around the pitch after next year’s Games, The Sun reports.
Tottenham, in contrast, plan to redevelop the stadium as a football-only base and pour at least 200 million pounds into upgrading athletics facilities at Crystal Palace National Sports Centre, without getting a penny in return.
In an open letter to Olympic Park Legacy Company chief executive Andrew Altman, Pele said: “I was lucky to play football all over the world. There is a big difference when a track separates you from fans and them from you. You want connection - the fans’ excitement is your excitement.
“I don’t get wanting to play with a track around the pitch. The players won’t like it and it probably won’t last,” he said.
Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has tried to stay out of the row that will be decided next Friday when the preferred bidder is announced.
He said: “The easiest option for us would have been to bid for the Olympic Stadium site with a retained athletics track. But it would have been the wrong option. Football and athletics cannot co-exist successfully in the same stadium.” (ANI)
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