Tottenham Hotspur’s first match in their new stadium could take place in January 2019, despite previous reports of a December 15 grand opening.
According to The Sun‘s Neil Ashton, Spurs – still temporarily housed at Wembley Stadium while the new as yet unnamed venue nears completion – are now aiming for a grand opening against Manchester United on January 13.
The Telegraph reported last week that Tottenham had made a target of a December date and were looking to make Burnley their first visitors at their home, given their desire to move in before Christmas.
Last month, manager Mauricio Pochettino revealed that he was confident the stadium would be opened ahead of the festive period based on conversations with chairman Daniel Levy.
“I am confident,” he declared. “This year. I am confident this year. I had a private conversation with Daniel, well not so private because Jesus (Perez) was there.
“I think they are confident. They are working hard to try to find the solution. I hope before the year ends, before Christmas, we can play. That’s my wish.”
Writing in The Sun, however, Ashton claims that the Lilywhites may end up playing their first game at their new stadium when they face United in the new year, while chairman Levy seeks to close a deal for naming rights.
“Daniel Levy, with his tail up as Tottenham target a White Hart Lane opener with Manchester United in January (next year), is turning the screw on his commercial department to find someone willing to pay for naming rights,” Ashton wrote.
“Spurs were struggling to convince firms to be associated with the new stadium while it was taking forever to build.
“But chairman Levy is optimistic someone will find a whopping £20million a year to be involved.
It won’t be easy, especially with Brexit talks making overseas investors nervous about the UK, but Levy is determined to finish this giant jigsaw puzzle.”
Pochettino’s side claimed a 3-0 victory on their visit to Old Trafford in August and will be hoping to christen their new grounds with a similar result, if The Sun’s report is to be believed.