The Lowdown: Eales’ plans
Speaking to The Chronicle, Eales has shared that the new owners are going to look at the possibility of expanding the stadium over time, with it currently being able to hold 52,000.
Matchdays are starting to sell out after some tickets had to be given away under the previous ownership of Mike Ashley, and as part of the long-term vision for the club, an expansion could well be in order.
The Latest: Whelan wowed
Speaking to Football Insider, Whelan was left wowed by the plans to expand St James’ Park, claiming that it is a ‘smashing’ ground, and that the expansion would ‘make absolute sense’ for Newcastle.
The 47-year-old stated: “It’s a smashing stadium, and somewhere you love to go. It’s very imposing when you approach it, and probably one of the only grounds which is in the city centre as well.
“Now that they’ve got the team sorted and they’re building on the pitch, why not? They know they have the demand, so why not improve the stadium if you know you can sell x amount of tickets?
“Not just for Newcastle, but for World Cups, European Championships – they’ll want it to stand out. If they can build up the capacity, it makes absolute sense.”
The Verdict: Get it done
Considering the trajectory in which Newcastle are heading, sitting sixth in the Premier League table and having enormous financial backing, eventually they will need a bigger stadium if they are selling out St James’ Park now.
They will likely attract many more supporters to Tyneside, and expanding the stadium would also mean more revenue in terms of tickets sold and accommodating the Toon Army.
Furthermore, it would also create a number of new jobs for locals in and around the area, and help the wider community further.