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Moving on: How clubs have fared after switching stadiums

Published 10/05/2016

West Ham are to leave Upton Park after 112 years
West Ham are to leave Upton Park after 112 years
The main entrance at Highbury Stadium, London.
Roker Park, Sunderland
Manchester City fans leave Maine Road for the last time
Leicester City fans make their way into Filbert Street for the last time
Bolton Wanderers run out at Burnden Park for the last time at home to Charlton
The Dell, former home of Southampton

West Ham will say goodbye to Upton Park on Tuesday night after calling the Boleyn Ground home for 112 years.

The Hammers host Manchester United in their final fixture before they move into the Olympic Stadium in Stratford next season.

Here, Press Association Sport looks at other high-profile clubs who switched stadiums and how they have fared since.


One of the founder members of the Football League had spent over 100 years at Burnden Park before opting for the site on the Middlebrook Retail Park where their modern stadium now sits. Wanderers had an 11-year Premier League run in their new ground, which also hosted European football and a Coldplay concert, but next year it will be a League One venue following the club's recent relegation. The facility is still owned by Bolton's owners after various other assets, including their training ground, were sold off this year to stave off the threat of liquidation.


Following the Hillsborough disaster and the subsequent Taylor Report, clubs were required to play in an all-seater stadium and converting Roker Park into such an arena proved too difficult for Sunderland. The Stadium of Light is just a stone's throw away from the Roker Park site and it will host its third England game later this month. Since moving, the Black Cats have spent the majority of the time in the Premier League and a home victory over Everton on Wednesday would seal a 10th straight year in the top flight.

2001 - SOUTHAMPTON: THE DELL (15,200 capacity) TO ST MARY'S STADIUM (32,505)

While many visiting teams came unstuck in the cramped atmosphere at The Dell, Saints needed a new residency and their then-home was not fit for a massive renovation. They moved to a venue more than twice the size of their previous ground, though they spent seven seasons outside the top flight recently before rising again. Things are looking up now, and a top-eight finish for the third successive campaign has already been confirmed by Ronald Koeman's team.


Martin O'Neill brought great success and increased interest in the Foxes in the late 1990s as he led them to four top-10 Premier League finishes and a pair of League Cup triumphs. Leicester decided they needed a bigger ground to accommodate more fans and they moved into a ground known originally as The Walkers Stadium. Although they have spent just three seasons in the top flight since they upped sticks, this term's unlikely Premier League triumph will see the King Power Stadium host Champions League football next year.

2003 - MANCHESTER CITY: MAINE ROAD (35,150) TO THE ETIHAD STADIUM (48,000, expanded to 55,097)

In a scenario similar to the Hammers' current situation, opportunity knocked for Manchester City when The City of Manchester Stadium needed a new resident following the Commonwealth Games in 2002. That helped make them an attractive proposition for the takeover fronted by Sheikh Mansour in 2008 and his millions have helped deliver two league titles, two League Cups and an FA Cup in recent years. City have since expanded the stadium and built the Etihad Campus around the ground.


Swansea were still only a fourth-tier club in their final campaign at Vetch Field but the local council recognised that both the Swans and the town's rugby union club, the Ospreys, needed new homes. Since moving into their current abode as part of a joint venture, the Swans have been on an upward trajectory, reaching the Premier League, where they will spend a sixth consecutive campaign next term. The site at Vetch Field was recently transformed into allotments.


Despite the success Arsene Wenger's side experienced at Highbury, including the 2003-04 Invincibles season, the club felt they needed to move to a bigger venue to generate the revenue needed to continue to compete with the division's big hitters. The cost of financing the new ground left Wenger without a significant transfer kitty for several seasons, but even after spending big on the likes of Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez recently, the Gunners have won just two FA Cups since the relocation.

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