The dispute between West Ham and the owners has flared up again over the international break.

The London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) has been outspoken about the cost of the stadium and the rents paid by the Hammers.

Now, comments have been made about the club’s fans in terms of security bills and claims over the accuracy of figures.

What has been said?

After the club claimed it paid £10m in rent, the LLDC has urged them to retract that statement. A letter to the club read: “This is an extremely serious and damaging statement to make against public officials appearing before elected assembly members and we will be asking West Ham to retract the claim.

“Their claim that we enjoy £10m from our association with West Ham is simply wrong and the money we generate from West Ham does not cover the cost of putting on the match days. We are not pointing the finger at West Ham for this, it is just a fact and something we have to deal with.

“We also said that the West Ham contract was just one area which caused financial problems for the stadium. The others we laid before members included the cost of seat moves from football to athletics and back again, our contract with UK Athletics and the stadium operator and high running costs.

“These are all areas we are tackling and making progress in getting on to a sound financial footing.”

 

Security costs

On top of that, they have hit out at West Ham fans for the increased costs of security. The LLDC said: “The Moore Stephens report commissioned by the Mayor and published in December 2017 reported that the club pay £2.5m a season with an entitlement to put on 25 games.

“The report stated it cost just under £200,000 for us to put on each game. Those figures on their own add up to a loss to us of more than £2 million a season.

“Since then costs have increased, not least because the behaviour of a small minority of West Ham fans at the end of last season means we now spend more on security. Each match so far this season costs an average of around £270,000 to stage.”

This is the last thing West Ham need

An embarrassing off-field wrangle, about a stadium that has already caused plenty of consternation, is the last thing that the club needs in light of its current on-pitch plight.

It does not reflect well on the club, and the fans surely do not want to hear any more about the stadium that has already proved unpopular.

The sooner the dispute is resolved and the facts are uncovered for good, the better.

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