Six futuristic football grounds that didn’t get built from Portsmouth to Chelsea

Having a state-of-the-art stadium is a prerequisite for any football club in the modern game.

The likes of Tottenham and rivals Arsenal have led the way with their plush new grounds in recent years, with Spurs' breathtaking White Hart Lane facility costing an estimated £850million, and holding a maximum capacity of 62,062. The Gunners' stadium, the Emirates, cost £390m to erect, giving them a capacity of 60,704.

Fellow Premier League bigshots Manchester City are set to follow suit after they announced a renovation of the Etihad which will increase their capacity to over 60,000, and include a slew of new features. And rivals Manchester United may be forced to leave Old Trafford as part of a £2billion new stadium plan if new owners are brought in.

But stadium upheavals and renovations don't always go to plan, no matter how grandiose the vision is. And here, the Daily Star examines some of what would've been the best grounds across the globe that never saw the light of day.


Portsmouth were on a roll back in the early 2000s. They won the FA Cup in the 2007/08 season, competed in the Uefa cup the following term, and featured in the Community Shield.

And following their heroic exploits, they planned to mark their ascension with a new ground. They unveiled plans to splash £600m on the Portsmouth Dockland Stadium stadium, which would've been funded by the renovation of 750 new homes when Fratton Park was demolished.

The lofty vision was conjured up by the Swiss architecture firm Herzog and de Meuron, who designed Bayern Munich's Allianz Arena and the Beijing National stadium. It was poised to be located at Portsea, adjacent to the naval bases and Gunwharf Quays' Spinnaker tower.

But that was until the 2008 economic crisis brought the plans crashing down. And Pompey remain at Fratton Park to this day.


Chelsea lifted the Champions League for the first time in 2012, the same year they unveiled plans to uproot from Stamford Bridge in favour of a new glitzy stadium.

The Blues were eyeing up Battersea Power Station to be their new home, and hoped to transform it into a luxury 60,000-seater. But former owner Roman Abramovich's billions weren't able to prevent the Blues from losing the bidding for the landmark to Malaysian companies – SP Setia and Sime Darby.

Chelsea have stayed put since the failed bid. But new owner Todd Boehly is said to be drawing up plans for a stadium renovation that would see Graham Potter's side play at Wembley for five years while the work is carried out.

Liverpool and Everton

The fierce rivals and neighbours presented a zany plan to build a 'Siamese' stadium via a Merseyside consortium back in 2010. The idea was for Liverpool and Everton to share a central spine, to allegedly slash production costs.

But the barmy vision was shelved after it was rejected by the powers that be. And it was probably for the best considering the bad blood between the two sides.

The bitter rivalry between them reared its ugly head once again in February when a scuffle broke out amongst players in the Merseyside Derby. And in a previous clash, Liverpool's former stopper Sander Westerveld revealed he wished he'd punched Francis Jeffers harder when they fought during the tense encounter.


Although Spurs boast one of the best stadiums in the game at White Hart Lane, it could've all been different for the LilyWhites if chairman Daniel Levy had his way. The Spurs shotcaller had plans to upheave the club and move them to East London.

Before rivals West Ham moved into the London Stadium, Levy thought it was the ideal location for Tottenham to reinvent themselves. He was so fixated on the site that mock up designs of the ground were drawn up.

But it all worked out for Spurs in the end as their new and improved home rakes in extra income through hosting NFL and boxing matches. And they're set to increase their revenue after revealing plans to build a go-karting track underneath the ground with the F1.

Bristol City

Bristol City were promoted from League One to the Championship in the 2007/08 season. And they wanted to build a new 42,000 complex in Ashton Vale around the same time.

The move would've seen them leave their Ashton Gate home where they were based since 1887. But eco-friendly locals put in an application which prompted an independent planner to push for a greener town, causing Bristol's plans to get shelved.


It's not just Premier League clubs who have eyed elaborate stadium renovations over the years. La Liga giants Barcelona had plans to upscale the Nou Camp by rehousing it next to the sea.

If successful, the iconic stadium would've been off the bay of the city, placing it on the sea, and the only route there would've been via a bridge. The club were preparing for a capacity of 150,000, but in the end, the outlandish idea remained just that.

But Barca's dreams of a new stadium are poised to come true – albeit on land this time. It comes after new sponsors Spotify agreed to a £1.25b renovation set to be complete in 2025.


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