By Luchia Robinson
Tottenham Hotspur are back and settling into their completed stadium on the High Road, after two years playing at Wembley whilst construction works took place.
Last month’s initial test matches in the new 62,062 capacity ground gave an indication of what match-days would be like.
The first saw the Under-18s team play against Southampton, whilst Spurs players from the recent past, including, Pascal Chimbonda, David Ginola, Allan Nielsen, Stephen Carr and Robbie Keane, stepped onto the new pitch, to take on Inter Forever, in the Spurs Legends test game.
The stadium’s grand opening ceremony, and the inaugural team match– a 2-0 win against Crystal Palace, took place just days later.
Speaking of the development of the stadium and its role in the regeneration of Tottenham, Chairman, Daniel Levy said: “The word regeneration is often used. It’s important to understand what we mean when we use it.
“We see it as bringing hope, prosperity and uplift to Tottenham, embracing the local community, building on the character and talents of the area. Our vision is that our neighbourhood is a prosperous, mixed community. If you live here, you should be able to study, work and play here.
The prospect of an economic boost to Tottenham has been reflected by Haringey Council, as leader, Cllr Joseph Ejiofor has said:
“The stadium will provide hundreds of jobs for residents and provide a major economic boost to local businesses. Our number one priority is that this stadium works for our residents and we will continue to work with the club to ensure people in Haringey feel the benefits of this fantastic destination.”
The stadium and surrounding area, known as the Northumberland Development Project, covers 20 acres of land, and has relocated businesses in order to facilitate the construction of the stadium, a college, a school and shops on the site.
Tottenham Hotspur has been at the forefront of the development taking place throughout Tottenham, and further investment is set to transform the High Road and surrounding areas over the coming years.
“Unlike any developer, we are not here to develop, take a profit and leave,” says Daniel Levy.
“We are here for the long-term. This is our home.”
It appears Spurs return home has boosted the team’s mentality, affecting their performance, as the team has made it through to the Champions League semi-finals for the first time in their history.
Having won the first leg, a home game against Manchester City 1-0, the second leg, played at the Etihad, ended 4-3 to City– propelling Spurs through to the semi-finals, 4-4 on away goals.