Tottenham get very upset at suggestions that White Hart Lane will not be ready for next season. So would you if you had sold 40,000 season tickets for a ground that might not exist. That’s 40,000 very unhappy customers on line one.
The important date is Saturday, September 15 — the weekend after England play Switzerland on September 11. The Premier League can follow precedent and give Tottenham their first three fixtures away from home, everything before the international break on September 3.
After that, it becomes problematic. Not least because Premier League rules state that wherever a club plays its first designated home match must remain its home until the end of the season.
Tottenham face a race against time to get their stadium ready for the Premier League season
If there is a chance White Hart Lane might be unfinished in mid-September, Tottenham’s options are limited and mostly disadvantageous.
If they go to Wembley, they potentially make it their home for another year, unless Tottenham can persuade the Premier League board to grant special dispensation allowing them to switch mid-way. Daniel Levy is lucky his fate is not in the hands of fellow chairmen, given how few friends he will have made in boardrooms with his hard-nosed transfer dealing.
There is also the matter of six elite clubs chasing four Champions League places. Why would Arsenal, Chelsea or Liverpool, for instance, wish to help Tottenham? ‘The only place to watch the Champions League in London’, smirked an advertisement for Tottenham’s new ground.
So while the Premier League as a body might be sympathetic to an extra game or two at Wembley — after all, the new White Hart Lane is a fabulous facility, and investment of that nature should be nurtured and encouraged — Levy must hope the owners of his rivals in the capital don’t spend much time reading the hoardings from limousine windows. And, if