Football – of the ‘association’ variety – on a rugby pitch?!? And not just any old rugby pitch mind you! We’re talking about Twickenham Stadium, the home of England Rugby. There are some folk who’d be outraged by the very thought of it. In fact some of them are probably already incandescent with rage, their blood boiling as they punch the screen of their laptop or stamp their smartphone into the dusty ground. Could it really happen? It could! Maybe.
The RFU have confirmed that Chelsea have been in contact with them about the possibility of using Twickenham stadium while Stamford Bridge gets redeveloped and expanded. According to BBC Sport, the RFU have said: “We have had an enquiry from Chelsea FC but have not had any discussions of any substance”. So, it’s early days and Chelsea are said to be considering a number of different options of which Twickenham is just one. Will the RFU be inclined to let a spherical ball roll around on the hallowed Twickenham turf? They might. There’s a lot of money in football and there are plenty of examples of football and rugby clubs sharing grounds although not quite in the same Premier League club / ‘national stadium’ way that this would play out.
And then of course there’s the question of what this might mean for the town on match days with thousands Chelsea fans making a beeline for Twickenham from across south west London and the Surrey prawn sandwich belt. 80,000 boozy rugby fans is one thing, 60,000 football fans is another.
So, would you be happy to see Chelsea set up a temporary home at Twickenham Stadium? And will it ever happen??
It’s fait to say there are a lot of unhappy people out there and, in true Twickenham spirit, there’s now a petition against the idea.
* BBC Sport