The Soccerphile World Cup 2002 Archives Click here to go to the current Soccerphile.com
After six years of false starts and excalating costs, plans for the redevelopment of Wembley stadium have at last been finalized. The English FA announced that 19 contracts have been signed and the finance guaranteed for the £757 million (US$1.2 billion) 90,000-seat stadium in north west London. The new design will replace the famous old twin towers with a new 133m high 'triumphal' arch.
The new national stadium will be the most expensive sports arena ever built. The FA has promised to underwrite the venture with £100 million upfront and a further £48 million in guarantees. The financial success of the project relies on the FA's ability to sell 18,800 premium seats at around £2000 a year for periods of two to four years aimed exclusively at corporate clients.
Further financing has been provided by the National Lottery which stumped up £120 million to purchase the site, German Bank WestLB and Credit Suisse First Boston which is providing a £12 million guarantee for the corporate seating.
The Australian developers Multiplex will begin demolition of the old stadium on Monday, as Wembley turns into London's largest ever building site employing over 1,500 people over the 39 months it will need for completion. The plans include a retractable roof and provision to build a prefabricated athletics track for major international events.
European football's governing body UEFA is to launch an enquiry into racist taunts and missiles directed at Arsenal's black players at the recent PSV Eindhoven - Arsenal European Champions League Game in Holland.
The incident follows reports of rascist abuse in Spain at the Valencia v Liverpool tie and in Croatia at the Hajduk Split v Fulham game the previous week involving black players from the two English clubs.
South Korean World Cup striker Ahn Jung-hwang made his J. League debut as a substitute for Shimizu S-Pulse on Saturday but finished on the losing side as his new team lost 2-1 away to Urawa Reds in Saitama.
In the K. League Songnam Chunma remain 7 points clear of Anyang Cheetahs at the top despite losing 1-0 away to third place Chunnam Dragons.
Ahn Jung-hwang's fellow World Cup striker Song Chong-gug continues to see action for Feyenoord in the Champions League and came close to opening his account in European competition in the 1-0 win against Newcastle.
Leeds chairman Peter Risdale has announced that new manager Terry Venables will have little money available for new transfers as the club fell further into the financial mire.
The Yorkshire club are seeking to cut their playing staff from 30 to 24 players and reduce the ratio of players' wages to turnover from 66% to 55%.
The club made an operating loss of £28.21 million in the last financial year and is now over £77 million in the red, though this will be offset by the £37 million brought in through the sales of Rio Ferdinand and Robbie Keane to Manchester United and Spurs.
Italian club Torino paid US$73,150 at an auction at Christie's in London to
purchase the Italian Cup their team won in 1943. The all-conquering Torino
side - who had won the league for a fifth consecutive season - were tragically
wiped out in an aircrash in 1947. The Cup ended up at the auctioneers
after it was given away in 2000 by Natalino Fossati, the club captain
in the 1970s, to a friend in financial difficulty.
At the same auction the ball from the 1888 FA Cup Final between West Bromich Albion and Preston North End sold for a world record price of US$51,210.
For a match ball signed by the 1998
World Cup winners France, visit Our Shop - click here
The Soccerphile World Cup 2002 Archives
Click here to go to the current Soccerphile.com
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