West Ham United have threatened to sue the owners of the London Stadium unless they cut beer prices before the club’s next home match.
The Premier League side stood ready to take legal action on Thursday after the cheapest pint for their season-opener against Manchester City was £7.30 – 40 per cent more than the equivalent beverage at Tottenham Hotspur (£5.19).
The threat followed fan anger at the beer prices being charged, which West Ham neither set nor profit from under the terms of their tenancy of the former Olympic Stadium.
They have cited a ‘Comparable Clubs’ clause in their catering agreement with those in charge of running the publicly-owned venue, which states food and drink at their matches should cost no more than the mean average of the amounts charged by Arsenal, Chelsea and Spurs. That would put the cost of the cheapest pint at £5.75.
After complaining to caterers Delaware North, West Ham were told no reductions could be made without the stadium owners’ permission.
The club have threatened legal action if such a change was not made in time for their Uefa Conference League game against Viborg on August 18.
West Ham declined to comment but Telegraph Sport has been told they were confident on Thursday that the matter would be quickly resolved.
Anger over beer prices at the London Stadium erupted on social media after their defeat to City on Sunday, including accusations supporters were being held to ransom during a cost-of-living crisis.
I know West Ham United themselves do not control the food/drink outlets within the London Stadium…
But surely the club can step in or take control because these prices are ridiculous.
Bottle of Coke £4.50
ZERO% Beer £6.20
1/2 a Pint £3.85
Absolutely disgusting. @davidgold pic.twitter.com/dzVLlFTz6Z
— James (@JameswhufcJones) August 7, 2022
Photographs of the refreshments menu at the ground showed Moretti and Heineken on draught for £7.60, with a bottle of Coca-Cola priced at £4.50.
The row over beer prices is the latest in a long line of public spats between West Ham and their landlords since the club became the stadium’s anchor tenants almost a decade ago in what critics branded ‘The Deal of the Century’.
The London Legacy Corporation said: “We do not agree with reports that there has been a breach in the concession agreement and had shared the pricing with the club before the start of the season, but we are reviewing the prices with our catering suppliers and continue to liaise with the club concerning any changes.”