For some years now we have moaned about the way Chelsea and Man City are subsidised by rich owners. Well we are about to have something new, a football club subsidised by the State.
Details of the proposed deal for West Ham to take over the Olympic Stadium are now emerging. The stadium cost £429m to build, a further £130-£200m is going to be spent on improvements to make it suitable for football. West Ham will contribute the princely sum of £15m (yes £15m) towards this, the rest will be public money.
The club will then pay £9m a year in rent on a 99 year lease. Boris is making a big deal of clawing back part (not all) of the profits if the owners sell the club. Profits from redeveloping the old ground remain entirely with West Ham. Essentially West Ham will become the only club in British football partly financed by the State.
As if it wasn't bad enough having to compete with billionaires we now have to compete with the government. It gets worse because there is no such thing as public money, its taxpayers money. So any of us who pay taxes, whether we support Spurs, Arsenal or any other club, will be subsidising West Ham. No one asked for our agreement, no one cares what we think. Isn't British democracy wonderful ?
Written by jod