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West Brom scrap stadium expansion plans

West Brom scrap stadium expansion plans
West Bromwich Albion FC will not be going ahead with a proposed stadium expansion, the club's chairman has confirmed.

Speaking in front of over 800 fans and sponsors at the annual end-of-season dinner, Jeremy Peace announced the U-turn on the plans which had been promised at the same event just two years previously. Mr Peace explained that with the impending financial fair play rules due to be brought into the Premier League starting from the 2013/14 campaign that it was not in the best interests of the club to embark on this expansion project.

The new ruling will restrict teams within the division to a wage bill increase of £4 million over the next three years while financial losses will need to be limited to a total of £105 million. A number of Premier League clubs approved the scheme but West Brom were not among them and Mr Peace said that he would prefer to run a club free from other regulations.

Speaking about the stadium expansion plans, the Baggies' chairman explained that the initial phase would have been upgrading the ground from its current 26,500 capacity to 30,000 but highlighted that there had only been an improvement of 200 in terms of average attendances.

Mr Peace said: "That's largely due to the general and local economic environment, and the increasing number of televised games. We believe that the atmosphere generated by a packed ground is desirable.

"So we will now find ways of adding seats within the existing stadium rather than building new capacity and creating indebtedness within the football club."

West Brom are currently enjoying their best-ever Premier League season and lie in eighth position with four games remaining.

The team have been a revelation under new boss Steve Clarke helped by the performances of on-loan Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku who has racked up 14 goals in his first full season. Saturday's (April 27th) 3-0 success away at Southampton represented the most amount of wins the Baggies have wrapped up in a Premier League campaign.

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Date: 30/04/2013 12:43:03

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