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West Ham deny rent-free claims

SoccerNews in English Premier League 6 Aug 2015

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West Ham have dismissed claims they will reside in London’s Olympic Stadium rent-free ahead the airing of a documentary which claims the UK taxpayer will be footing the bill for many services in their new home.

A documentary, set to air while Slaven Bilic’s side take on Astra Giurgiu in the UEFA Europa League on Thursday, claims to have seen documents revealing that “facilities and services” such as stewarding and policing on matchdays will be paid for by the London Legacy Development Corporation, funded by public money.

It is claimed that the sum of these services could reach £2.5million, which matches the annual rent West Ham are set to pay when they move into the stadium for the 2016-17 season.

While the club have refuted these claims, they have insisted in a statement that they will be raising a significant amount of money to be paid back into public coffers, as well as vowing that portions of future earnings will also be directed to taxpayers.

The statement read: “Without us the stadium would lose money. The suggestion we are getting the stadium rent free is wrong – we are more than paying our way.

“There is absolutely no chance tickets will be dumped on the market. We need to move as we have simply outgrown the Boleyn Ground.

“It defies logic that David Gold and David Sullivan will sell the club. They have made it clear they would like to pass their shares on to their children.

“They were also happy to include a clause that would return a substantial sum of money to the taxpayer should they sell the club following our move to Stratford.”

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