Tottenham Hotspur’s Supporters’ Trust are fearing that the wrong groundshare could damage the clubs identity.
Spurs will be forced into a groundshare for the 2017/18 season, with their proposed new ground unlikely to be completed in time for the start of that campaign.
Various options are being considered - notably Wembley, the Olympic Stadium, and stadium:mk - but any move will see the club away from their traditional North London home.
And this move away from the majority of their fan base has drawn criticism from the THST, who claim that, whilst keen to leave White Hart Lane to see the new stadium built faster, any move could alienate the identity of the club - who have always been associated with North London.
In a statement on the official THST website, the Trust raised some key issues which they feel will further distance the club and the local fans.
It read: "While the Trust are pragmatic about the need to move from White Hart Lane for one season, the prospect of moving from North London raises a number of issues for supporters, the local community, and the Club’s identity.
"For the supporters, there are serious issues over the logistics and expense of travel to home games
"For the local community, which is depending upon the stadium project as a catalyst for regeneration, there are serious economic implications. We believe the cost of such a move to the local economy needs to be seriously considered
"And moving away from the area threatens serious damage to the identity of a Club which has always played in North London
"We would like greater transparency as to why the option of playing at White Hart Lane, the option which would benefit N17 the most, is apparently now no longer available.
"Our greatest concern is that, once the Club moves for one season, it is but a short step towards moving for two seasons, or more. When the Club’s current board tried to move us to Stratford, Tottenham Hotspur supporters showed their fierce opposition and we would urge the Club to learn the lessons from that episode.
"A football club divorces itself from its community and identity at its peril.”
It is good to see the Trust focusing upon the economic implications of the local community, rather than just dealing with the key footballing issues. A poll on the website suggests that 60% of Spurs fans would be willing to see the club away from White Hart Lane for one season, but, as mentioned ‘it is but a short step towards moving for two seasons, or more’.
If the club hold true to their word, not only will their new stadium be completed in a short amount of time, but they will further strengthen the bonds between club and fan - the two most vital aspects of football.