West Ham United’s training ground facilities are a running joke among fans but it could soon become a serious problem.
West Ham’s training facilities – at both Rush Green and the former base at Chadwell Heath – have long been criticised by Hammers fans, past players and managers.
At Chadwell Heath players who complained were famously told by long-serving club staff ‘It was good enough for Bobby Moore’.
But with West Ham facing a daunting task to try and re-establish themselves as a competitive force on the pitch next season – should they stay up – they will soon be facing a widening gulf in class off it too.
West Ham co-owner defended Rush Green after criticism from supporters
Hammers fans have seen most Premier League clubs, including the likes of Tottenham, Brighton and Burnley invest millions in their training facilities.
West Ham fans are embarrassed by theirs.
Back in December West Ham owner David Gold was forced to defend the facilities at Rush Green.
“We have over the last few years spent millions on improving the training facilities to the highest standards at both Chadwell Heath and Rush Green,” Gold said on Twitter.
We have over the last few years spent millions on improving the training facilities to the highest standards at both Chadwell Heath and Rush Green. dg
— David Gold (@davidgold) December 15, 2019
That did not cut any ice with West Ham fans, though. Brighton spent £30million on a brilliant new training complex.
Footage of Leicester’s new training complex has West Ham fans green with envy
Burnley’s is also excellent while a number of Championship clubs also boast excellent training facilities.
Footage has now emerged of Leicester’s £100million new training base, which is set to be ready ahead of next season.
And it is stunning.
The footage and images were posted on Twitter by a Leicester supporter. And they attracted plenty of comments from West Ham fans.
Many of the comments can’t be used here as they contain swearing. But the general consensus from West Ham fans was the facilities put the Hammers’s Portakabins to shame.
West Ham facing gulf in class off the pitch
In the past West Ham fans would accept their training complexes might not compare to the top clubs.
But for the Hammers to be falling behind the likes of Leicester, Brighton, Burnley and co – despite having to pay just £2.5million per year rent for the London Stadium – is infuriating for supporters.
Of course it’s not the facilities that get results on a Saturday. But it can help attract the top talent and staff that do.
All the pieces of the jigsaw need to be in place for a club to progress on and off the pitch.
West Ham are the 18th richest club in world football. But the fact is that is not reflected in any tangible way whether it is league position, training facilities or ability to compete for honours and European football.
A top quality training complex is fundamental for any ambitious football club.
And West Ham are in danger of being left behind on that front.
— Billy Wakefield (@BWakefield07) July 8, 2020
Here is the video for anyone interested https://t.co/eM6PMZu9By
— Billy Wakefield (@BWakefield07) July 9, 2020
Ours is better pic.twitter.com/GZAlQw4FHb
— Hammers Thru & Thru (@camwestham) July 13, 2020