INEOS-Led Consortium Unveils Ambitious Plans for ‘New Old Trafford’ with a ‘New Stretford End’ in the Works

INEOS-Led Consortium Unveils Ambitious Plans for ‘New Old Trafford’ with a ‘New Stretford End’ in the Works

In a significant development, Sir Jim Ratcliffe and INEOS are actively pursuing plans to revamp Old Trafford, with a focus on potentially constructing a massive 90,000-seater stadium and introducing a ‘new Stretford End.’

The plans, discussed ahead of the anticipated confirmation of Ratcliffe’s 25% stake in Manchester United, reveal the consortium’s determination to rejuvenate the iconic venue.

Rebuild or Refurbish: INEOS Explores Options for Old Trafford’s Future

INEOS has engaged with potential investment partners globally and locally as part of their rapid efforts to either rebuild or refurbish Old Trafford.

While initial considerations included the possibility of moving away from the historic venue, recent reports confirm that this option has been discarded.

The favored approach now leans toward a comprehensive rebuild on adjacent land, with an estimated project completion timeframe of five years.

A Visionary Redesign: ‘New Old Trafford’ and ‘New Stretford End’ in the Works

The consortium contemplates a transformative project that could potentially include a 90,000-seater ‘new Old Trafford’ with a modernized ‘new Stretford End.’

Inspired by designs such as Tottenham’s impressive stadium, the vision is to create a state-of-the-art venue that redefines Manchester United’s home ground.

Government and Football Association Involvement on the Horizon

INEOS is wasting no time in initiating talks with local politicians, including Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham, to explore potential government involvement in the project.

Additionally, discussions with the Football Association may arise, aiming to lure select England matches away from Wembley to what could become a Northern counterpart to the iconic stadium.

Infrastructure and Financing: Five-Star Hotel and Increased Revenue Prospects

The proposed redevelopment spans from Old Trafford to the waterfront, linking the area with MediaCity. The ambitious plan encompasses the addition of a 5-star hotel and facilities catering to international visitors.

With INEOS’s experience in funding vast infrastructure projects, financing discussions would need to be held with majority owners, the Glazers.

The potential increase in the club’s revenues could make this an appealing prospect, distinguishing it from the existing debt associated with the Glazers’ leveraged buyout.

Government Perspective on Funding and Potential Uses

Government insiders suggest that public funding for the stadium would require a multifaceted approach, often seen in public-funded stadiums with varied uses, including multi-sport events.

While any potential debt would need careful consideration, it is viewed as a different proposition compared to the Glazers’ existing leveraged buyout debt.

Public-funding-backed stadia often serve multiple purposes, contributing to major sporting events and regional development initiatives.

City’s Sporting Legacy: Comparisons with Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium

Drawing parallels with Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium, which played a central role in the city’s successful bid for the 2002 Commonwealth Games, the transformative plans for Old Trafford aim to position it as a versatile and dynamic hub.

The bid for the 2028 European Championship finals did not select Old Trafford as a venue, adding impetus to the vision for a redesigned and revitalized iconic stadium.**

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