Premier League: Tottenham set to host either Crystal Palace or Brighton in first match at long-delayed new stadium

Agence France-Presse
One of the two test events before the Premier League opening are a Tottenham Under-18 match against Southampton's youngsters on 24 March with a reduced 30,000-capacity

London: Tottenham will finally play their first Premier League match at their long-delayed new stadium against either Crystal Palace or Brighton in April.

The north London club had hoped to open the new arena on the site of their old White Hart Lane home last September.

But a series of delays involving safety and security measures have forced Tottenham to use Wembley as their temporary home for a second successive season.

It was feared Tottenham might have to wait until next term to move into their expensive new digs.

But on Friday they announced two further test events will take place at the end of March, which should lead to the stadium being granted a safety certificate.

The new 62,000-capacity stadium, costing a reported £850 million ($1.1 billion) will then host a Premier League match against Palace on 3 April or against Brighton on the weekend of 6 and 7 April.

The dates of both fixtures are subject to Brighton's progress in the FA Cup, as they will be playing in the semi-finals that weekend if they beat second-tier Millwall in the last eight.

If Brighton reach the last four, then the London derby against Palace, who could also be in the FA Cup semis, will be Tottenham's first home league game, but, if Chris Hughton's team lose in the cup, the Palace game will be put back and the Seagulls will be the maiden visitors.

"We have held discussions with the Premier League and UEFA. The following has been agreed with the Premier League, Brighton and Crystal Palace to ensure that our first game is a Premier League match prior to a UEFA Champions League quarter-final match," a Tottenham statement said.

"If Brighton win their FA Cup quarter-final match on Sunday 17 March we shall play Crystal Palace on Wednesday 3 April and Brighton on 23/24 April. If Brighton lose their FA Cup quarter-final match on Sunday 17 March we shall play Brighton on 6/7 April (subject to Champions League scheduling) and Crystal Palace on 23/24 April," added the statement.

One of the two test events before the Premier League opening are a Tottenham Under-18 match against Southampton's youngsters on 24 March with a reduced 30,000-capacity. The other is a Tottenham Legends game on 30 March with a reduced 45,000-capacity.

In a message to Tottenham fans, chairman Daniel Levy said: "We are delighted that we shall be able to welcome our supporters to the stadium and our players of the past and the future to take to the pitch on what will be momentous occasions for our Club. Please do come and see your new stadium and share these moments. Thank you all once again. Your support has been much appreciated during a challenging but exciting time."

 

Also See: Premier League: Struggling Leicester City part ways with manager Claude Puel after losing six of last seven matches

Premier League: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer spearheads Manchester United season-ticket sales video to hint at permanent role

Premier League: Manchester United midfielder Fred needs to make the most of opportunities, says manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Read more on Sports by Firstpost.