Spurs schedule new stadium test event for August - but could play some home games at Wembley

Tottenham Hotspur have scheduled a test event for their new stadium in August – but face the growing possibility of playing some home games at Wembley next season.

Spurs have delayed informing the Football Association whether they want to use Wembley again for part of next season with a final decision now expected after the Premier League fixtures are published on June 14 because that will have implications on the sale of tickets.

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Then Spurs will also have a clearer idea of their fixture schedule. They will already be granted a run of away matches to kick off the new campaign, as happened with West Ham United in 2016-17 and Liverpool in 2017-18, but may also have to ask the Premier League for special dispensation to use two stadiums depending on when their new one is finished.

Spurs are expected to hold a first test event as an opening training session, with around 30,000 fans attending, but will have to hold another closer to the 61,500 capacity before playing a first official match there in order to gain a safety certificate.

Ideally, Spurs will move into their new home after the international break in mid-September but there are growing concerns that the stadium is running behind schedule and that timetable will slip, opening up the possibility of having to use Wembley. They will, at least, play their first four league games away from home.

Tottenham's new stadium in pictures
Tottenham's new stadium in pictures

The Premier League is likely to be sympathetic to Spurs’ case despite the rule that a club should not use two stadiums as home grounds. However this is open to appeal and a special dispensation can be granted by the Premier League board if Spurs make such an application. Given the scale and importance of Spurs’ project they are unlikely to be penalised with the application looked upon on its merits. The Premier League wants to be supportive.

Spurs chairman Daniel Levy has repeatedly stated the ground, built on land adjoining their previous home at White Hart Lane, will be ready to use next season and an NFL game is scheduled there for October 14. It remains to be seen whether that game takes place – it could be switched to Twickenham – while, officially, all Spurs will say is that they will play in their new stadium next season.

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