Crystal Palace consider Selhurst Park expansion
Crystal Palace FC are looking into the possibility of expanding the capacity of Selhurst Park following their promotion the Premier League.
The south London club clinched a return to the top flight thanks to extra time penalty from veteran Kevin Phillips in the play-off final against Watford at the end of May. As they prepare for the challenging Premier League campaign co-chairman Steve Parish, chief executive Phil Alexander and manager Ian Holloway have sat down to discuss how to benefit the ground with the £120 million windfall from securing promotion.
Following the relegation of both Queens Park Rangers and Wigan Athletics, Palace's Selhurst Park will be one of the smallest stadiums in the league with only 26,309 being accommodated. This has prompted the club's board to consider expanding the ground to hold 35,000 to 40,000 spectators.
Palace have decided upon redevelopment as opposed to relocation after giving up hope on the site at Crystal Palace. Mr Parish explained that the club is now keen on creating a "lasting legacy" at Selhurst Park but admitted that a lot of work needed to be done to allow to rival some of the Premier League's top grounds.
"We’re focused on Selhurst and we’re masters of our own destiny there. We have a lot of support from Croydon Council. We’re looking at building a 35,000-40,000 seater, that’s what you need to be viable in the Premier League. It’s early days but winning promotion helps speed that work up a bit," Mr Parish added.
The co-chairman explained that he was keen not to put timeframes on the plans as the whole process is not entirely in the hands of the club.
While Palace are making great strides off the pitch, on the football field they have a difficult task of forging a squad capable of avoiding relegation. The club were last promoted in 2004 under the stewardship of
Iain Dowie but were relegated a year later with just 33 points. The Eagles will be in the transfer market during the summer to ensure lightning does not strike twice.
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Date: 13/06/2013 16:40:00
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