West Ham chief David Gold makes 'White Elephant' stadium claim on Twitter

Olympic Stadium 2

West Ham United co-owner David Gold has hit out over jibes about the club's impending move to the Olympic Stadium.

The Hammers will leave their Boleyn Ground home of 112 years this summer and begin their new existence as anchor tenants of the 54,000 seater stadium, at a reported annual cost of £2.5m, from the start of the 2016/17 campaign.

The move has been dogged by unsuccessful legal challenges from the likes of Tottenham Hotspur and Leyton Orient.

However, the Information Commissioner recently ruled that the terms of the deal must be made public, after Freedom of Information was requested by campaigners - many fans of rival football teams up and down the country.

The London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) and the Hammers have attempted to block any release of information, insisting that details of the deal involving the largely taxpayer-funded stadium must remain private for commercial confidentiality and London Mayor Boris Johnson recently revealed the east Londoners are even considering legal action, as reported by Sky Sports.

Johnson has staunchly defended the decision to hand the Hammers the keys to the iconic stadium, saying they will provide a genuine legacy unlike other Olympic Stadia in other countries.

"I think we should be rather proud that we have got a Premier League football team in the stadium," Johnson told Sky Sports back in October.

'The OS would be a White Elephant'

And now Gold has reacted angrily to suggestions from a fan of his former club Birmingham City on Twitter that the Hammers are getting a free ride.

Gold said: "Just to put the record straight without West Ham the OS would become a White Elephant costing the tax payer millions."

Brazil debacle makes it difficult to argue

And it is difficult to argue with him.

Proof, if it was needed, that West Ham are the saving grace for the £517 million venue, comes from South America where Brazil's $900 million World Cup stadium is now being used as a parking lot.

A damning report on the website Vox.com, shows Brazil spent $3 billion building 12 new or heavily refurbished stadiums for the 2014 World Cup.

The article, which was retweeted by Hammers co-owner David Gold, says the symbolic and most expensive stadium, in Brasilia, is now regularly used as a site for a municipal bus car park.

That is despite officials reportedly promising the taxpayer-funded venues would continue to generate revenue for years, hosting concerts, football matches and other events.

But as news site NPR reports, most stadiums are failing to generate much revenue at all with Brasilia the prime example.

Repurposing Olympic venues a thankless task

Repurposing an Olympic venue is a often a thankless task as most events could never compare to their original states of glory. But West Ham will get as close as you can get, hosting regular matches in the most watched football league in the world.

he warning signs are there for all to see with the likes of the abandoned Athens (2004) and Beijing (2008) stadia offering haunting examples of how the billions spent can go shamefully to waste.

The Olympic Stadium is already promising to start paying its way, though. It will be used for the Rugby World Cup later this year before it is handed over to West Ham ahead of their move from Upton Park next summer.

Should the Hammers remain a Premier League force by then the likes of giants Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester City and Liverpool will be regular visitors to Queen Elizabeth Park, creating jobs, trade and more importantly a lasting legacy for Britain.

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