The 2017/18 season was expected to be the very last at the old Stamford Bridge. However, recent news suggest the move will come in mid-2019 and new stadium won’t be done until mid-2023.
Although the information surfaced a few days back already, we’re yet to see any confirmation on behalf of Chelsea FC. We even checked the minutes from late-April fans forum to see if anything was mentioned to supporters, but no, nothing.
And the reason we’re writing all of the above is the fact that all of this latest information is based on Daily Mail’s claims which not all media decided to follow with the tabloid’s mixed reputation.
So here it is: according to the tabloid Chelsea will not be moving out of Stamford Bridge until mid-2019, which is a year later than expected. Further, the club would spend as long as four seasons (instead of three) away from The Bridge, which means they would return to their spiritual home in mid-2023.
The serious delay is supposedly caused by the complexity of the redevelopment project and its logistics. Among other issues, the stadium’s public concourse will run above operating railway lines. Overall spatial constraints make the revamp extremely challenging, combined with the scale (60,000 seats planned) and complexity of the final design.
There is no risk of Chelsea needing to reapply for planning permission, if the news is confirmed. Even if delayed, the Blues will make it until 2019 to break ground and 2024 to launch the final phase.
While it's commonly understood that Wembley is the desired location for Chelsea's temporary relocation, the club is yet to confirm a final selection. During the fans forum in April club officials claimed no deal is signed and many options remain open. One major criterion is staying within M25, the 100-mile highway surrounding London.