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Other SportsSir Jim Ratcliffe plan for new Man United stadium backed by council

Sir Jim Ratcliffe plan for new Man United stadium backed by council

New Manchester United co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s designs on creating a new stadium which could be a ‘Wembley of the North’ has been described as “wonderful” by the leader of the local council’s redevelopment plans.

Businessman Ratcliffe said he wanted to replace United’s Old Trafford home with a stadium that could be used as a national venue when his purchase of 27.3% of the club for more than £1 billion was ratified last week.

“That is great ambition from Jim Ratcliffe and these plans match that in terms of the setting and the future of the area,” councillor Liz Patel said, according to BBC News.

“How United get together the finances for their own stadium refurbishment would be separate.”

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The report said that a new stadium built on land adjacent to Old Trafford within the Trafford Wharf area could cost around £2bn.

The stadium proposal is a key part of the council’s development plans which will go out to public consultation next week, with Patel seeing a role for the council in organising funding.

New Man United stadium could replace ‘tired’ Old Trafford

While the likes of Tottenham and Manchester City’s newly-built stadiums have played a part in regenerating the local areas, Old Trafford – the largest stadium in the Premier League, with a capacity of 74,310 – is regarded as relatively dilapidated.

Ratcliffe told BBC sports editor Dan Roan that the stadium had become “tired and in need of refurbishment”.

The leader of the Ineos group, which has taken over football operations at United, said a “conversation” with the government would be required about taxpayer funding if the stadium serves a national purpose.

Patel is said to have received cross-party support for regeneration plans which could take up to 20 years to be completed.

“This vision for Trafford Wharfside is tremendously exciting and we are proud to be supporting Trafford Council with their ambitious plans for an area with such huge potential,” said United’s chief operating officer, Collette Roche, speaking earlier this month.

“We will continue to work closely with the council and other local stakeholders on how any future development work at Old Trafford can complement their vision and, most importantly, benefit the local community.”

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