Saturday, 22 January 2011

You take the High Road...


I guess I should say something about Stratford. It seems important.

This week, in particular, it'd be like writing a blog about politics and not mentioning Andy Coulson. Or writing a blog about devious snivelling cunts and not mentioning Andy Coulson.

The trouble is, I have no really strong opinion. I realise this isn't what the blogosphere needs. Feelings are running high. Mine are having a duvet day.

I'm not from Tottenham and neither are my family. (South Wales, actually. Yeah, exactly). I have no ties to the area and it's not the most salubrious, is it? That's not a terrible thing, I know that. And it's obviously not a reason to move.

No one wants the chichi crap that now dominates around Chelsea, and we all have our favourite little haunts. But, well, you wouldn't book a holiday there, would you?

I started going, 25 years ago, because my mates went. And yes, some of their families did come from N17 or thereabouts.

I want us to have a 60,000+ seat stadium, I want us to make loads more revenue every match day, I want everyone who's put their name down for a season ticket to get a season ticket, and a I don't want us to go bust (or be hamstrung in the transfer market) making that all happen. I guess we all want that.

Ideally, yeah, let's move 50 yards down the High Road. And have better transport infrastructure and facilities as part of the package. Plus, it means a team called Tottenham still play in an area of London called Tottenham.

But, if we move to Stratford, if we get a world class new ground with the best transport links in the capital, and we get it for a fifth of the proposed cost of the Northumberland Park scheme, then I think I'll get over it.

I don't think it's that I'm missing something, not something logistical or practical, anyway; no, what I'm missing is a meaningful, visceral attachment to the area.

My biggest concern about moving might be that it'll give other fans (let alone our fans) a new stick to beat us with. We're still rattling on about the Woolwich Wanderers nearly 100 years after they crossed the river.

And my biggest concern about not moving is that West Ham will somehow think they've 'won'. (To be fair, it's not surprising they have trouble with the definition of the word. It's like an Eskimo struggling with 'sunburn', completely understandable).

Those are the trivial side issues on which I'm judging this. Which is wrong, I know.

There are many loud and convincing voices proclaiming that the heart and soul of Tottenham Hotspur are at stake here. They may be right. But my heart and soul aren't.

What really puzzles me is why the fuck they want to hold the Olympics in Warwickshire in the first place.


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