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Are Tottenham Set to Lead the Way With Multi-Purpose Football Grounds?

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium's East Stand
"Outside of the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium" by Hzh (CC BY-SA 4.0)

After a number of delays throughout the season, Tottenham finally moved into their new ground in April. As of now, the ground is named the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, although that is expected to change when they sell the naming rights to a sponsor over the summer in time for next season. The stadium is certainly impressive, with a capacity of just over 62,000 and a whole host of impressive facilities to give their fans the best possible experience from walking into the ground, to leaving after the event.

However, what Tottenham have set out to do with their ground, is to make it a multi-purpose ground. This is unusual for football clubs, who tend to want the facility to themselves, and something we haven't seen a club do yet. We have seen Wembley used for many other sports as well as concerts, but the gaps in between games held there mean they have to use it for something else.

The stadium could be about to taste its first success if Tottenham can win the Champions League final next month. Having such a big success so soon after the stadium has been opened would be a huge boost to the club, and bring even more attention to the club and their new ground. Despite being outsiders to lift the trophy in the final, many Spurs fans will still be backing their team for success in the final, which takes place in Madrid. Those who do so may want to look at the large number of free bet offers currently available ahead of the big game, which takes place on the 1st of June.

While the win won't directly affect the stadium, other than keeping one of the most famous trophies in the world inside it, a win would shine a light on the football club, and bring more attention to them and their successes. Are Tottenham about to lead the way by being the first club to really embrace the use of a multi-purpose football ground in England? They have certainly started off on the right foot, with two deals signed to bring other sports to the ground.

NFL at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

The biggest deal that Tottenham have signed is to host NFL games at the stadium, and this is something they have heavily invested in when creating the ground. The pitch inside the stadium is retractable, and they have one for the football games and one for the NFL that takes place. The advantage this has over Wembley is that the NFL game will not wear out the surface, so if Tottenham are playing at home a week after they will have a perfect surface.

Off the field, Tottenham have also invested in the NFL, creating two extra large dressing rooms for the teams playing, due to the number of players and support staff needed. This shows that Tottenham are serious about hosting NFL games, and they want them for the future. We have seen Wembley as the home of the NFL in this country for many years, but that was simply because it was the only stadium really capable of holding the games. Now Wembley has a challenger in the form of the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, and don't be surprised to see further NFL games given to Tottenham when teams and players get a taste of the facilities on offer.

There has long been talk of a UK franchise entering the NFL, and it was expected that the team would play at Wembley. However, if the first few games go well at Tottenham we should see Tottenham bid to host the team and their games, if they can fit them in around the football schedule, which shouldn't be too difficult.

The NFL at Wembley
"The NFL at Wembley" by Ian Hughes (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Saracens Rugby Club to Play at Tottenham Stadium

Another sport heading to the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium is rugby, courtesy of London club Saracens. They have struck a deal with Spurs to play their annual big game at the stadium, something that has been played at both Wembley and the London Stadium in the past. However, now it has a new home, and the deal will last for the next five years, which is a big commitment by both clubs.

Over 40,000 watched Saracens play at the London Stadium this season, but Tottenham will be hoping to attract even more to their 62,000 seater stadium next season. With the ability to use the NFL retractable pitch for the rugby games played at the stadium, there is the chance of more games coming to the stadium in the future. There would be no issues with damaging the football pitch like other stadiums would have. The only issue would be a clash with the NFL games, which is easy to avoid.

The deals to bring NFL and rugby to the stadium are just the first two of what could be more. Concerts have already been mentioned, and with those taking place through the summer when no sport is on, that could be the way that Tottenham bring use to their stadium during the off-season. Although a football club, Spurs look like they could be about to lead the way by being a club that offers a multi-purpose stadium, hosting multiple sports as well as other events during the summer. The stadium was planned with this in mind, and now it is really beginning to pay off.

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