This week Wasps have announced a move to the Ricoh Arena in Coventry. Here's what you had to say about the club's new chapter...
Wasps have long been looking for a permanent home, and owners will be hoping that moving the club to the Ricoh Arena in Coventry will provide much-needed stability for the club, who previously played at Adams Park and Loftus Road.
Wasps CEO Nick Eastwood explains the reasons for the move in the below video
The side, which has shared a ground with Wycombe Wanderers FC since 2002, have been subject to well-documented financial troubles for a number of years, which came to a head two season ago when they narrowly avoided going into administration. A consortium took over ownership in 2012, led by Ken Moss, and then in 2013 Irish businessman Derek Richardson became the majority shareholder, and the ambition to move to their own ground has been in the forefront of their minds. Rumours of a ground share with Brentford RFC in west London, where Wasps originally laid their roots before the move to High Wycombe, surfaced last season, but instead Wasps announced the acquisition of a 50% share in in the Ricoh Arena in Coventry. The club will play their first home game there in December, against Castres or London Irish (TBC).
Coventry is 83 miles from Adams Park, Wasps’ current ground, and there has been an angry backlash from the fans. Some have told RW they intend to cancel their season tickets, and there’s even been a petition started to keep the club in London. With gates of around 5,500 to 6,500 this season, the club’s priority will be expanding their fan base.
Furthermore, Wasps are now moving to the rugby hotbed of the midlands, and will be competing with Premiership giants Northampton and Leicester, as well as the Championship’s Worcester and National 1’s Coventry RFC for bums on seats. Furthermore, with the Ricoh Arena being in Worcester’s catchment area, the recruitment of players could become problematic for both clubs.
Click here to watch a couple of Wasps take part in Pump Up The Ball
Worcester coach Dean Ryan said: “I can’t imagine we’re the loudest voice. There’d be two major players on the other side of Warwickshire with louder voices than us, who won’t be over the moon about it either. We’re investing a lot of money in the region, We’ve got an academy. We’re all working for the same thing. We have support that comes from that area and kids who come from that area. Warwickshire has been over the years a productive source for us. I can’t quite see the merits of this, other than purely commercial for Wasps’ first team.”
Click here to find out what Simon Shaw has to say about Wasps’ move to Coventry.
What you had to say about it…
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