Belfast Telegraph

Spurs bid hit by IOC chief

Tottenham's bid to take over the Olympic Stadium has suffered a blow after Jacques Rogge revealed he was against its demolition.

International Olympic Committee president Rogge wants London 2012 bosses to keep their promise to ensure an athletics track remains at the arena after the Games but Spurs have proposed to take the stadium apart and replace it with a 60,000-capacity purpose-built football ground, while revamping Crystal Palace athletics stadium.

Rogge told the Evening Standard the IOC had "always been keen on a scheme whereby a running track would be retained".

He added: "I don't think there is a lack of will and commitment on the side of (London 2012 chief) Sebastian Coe...

"I think (Coe) will fight for that. I think he will be successful and we support that.

"There will be a track either here or there and we would prefer to have one in the Olympic Stadium."

Meanwhile, it has been claimed Spurs could be forced to change their name if they move from White Hart Lane to Stratford.

Leading intellectual property lawyer Alexander Carter-Silk, of law firm Speechly Bircham, said: "It is our view that the club's exclusive right to use the name Tottenham Hotspur would be open to legal challenge if the club continued to use the Tottenham reference when it ceased to have any direct reference with the locality."

That would further anger fans opposed to a move east.

Spurs, who also have an alternative plan to rebuild White Hart Lane, continue to insist they will not make a decision on that front until a preferred bidder is chosen in just over two weeks.


From Belfast Telegraph