The Mail on Sunday reports in an EXCLUSIVE that Tottenham’s new stadium may not open until 2019 after some safety systems were found to be missing completely.

Sources who spoke to the MoS believe the problems could take up to six months to sort out.

They told the MoS reporters, “The critical issues include [safety] systems. Some systems are incomplete or missing and nobody knows how long it is going to be.

“Completion could run into next year, depending on what other issues crop up. A best guess is that this delay will be between three to six months. In addition, the cost of the build has already reached £1billion and it is difficult to predict what the final bill will be. The costs keep piling up.”

180819 mail on sunday spurs stadium delay 1
via Mail on Sunday
180819 mail on sunday spurs stadium delay 2
via Mail on Sunday

Tottenham have also been told that their ‘fire detection contractor’ “encountered higher than usual electrical wiring faults.”

A spokesperson for Spurs said, “Urgent follow-up meetings with Mace [Tottenham’s construction partners] and the trade contractors are currently taking place. We are reviewing the situation and planned timetable to rectify and re-test, after which we shall be in a better position to outline a revised timetable.”

On Saturday, we reported that a company working on Tottenham’s new stadium have advertised for electricians to start immediately on a ‘three-month contract’.


The ad was discovered and posted on Reddit by an eagle-eyed user and was the first hint that things could get worse for Spurs before the MoS released their exclusive.

According to Construction Enquirer Spurs are now paying workers on the new stadium more per week than they spend on players.

“The Enquirer understands that yesterday saw a record workforce of 3,800 operatives clock-in on the project which saw its planned opening delayed this week,” they wrote. CE also revealed that electricians were being paid £400-a-day in June. One expert close to the project added, “You’ve got 3,800 operatives down there in two shifts and whatever overtime they want.

“There’s 600 electricians on site and thousands of other trades.

“Being conservative that’s going to rack-up at an average of at least £1,000 a week per head in labour costs.” That’s £3.8m-a-week. Spurs players pick up a total of around £2.4m-a-week.

tottenham stadium
What they want it to look like

The stadium was supposed to be ready for Spurs to play all their home games at their new ground, apart from the match against Fulham which wwas always expected to take place at Wembley.

Spurs Stadium 2
What it currently looks like (via Construction Manager Magazine)

But they have now announced that their games against Liverpool (15 September) and Cardiff City (6 October) will also take place at England’s national stadium.

Their game against City, which has been moved to Sunday 28 October for TV, cannot be played at Wembley as they are hosting an NFL game on that date and Pep Guardiola has already hinted that he is opposed to switching it to a City home game as it would leave him with only one home game in their final five matches of the season.

“We want to help the Premier League,” he told reporters at his press conference this week.

“This can happen because they build an amazing stadium for Tottenham Hotspur, sometimes there are delays.

“We are going to adapt if we can adapt but of course we are going to think of ourselves as well.

“I don’t know. I can only say, when that happens, of the last five games four are away.”

Ashburton Grove

What all this does is highlight what a remarkable job Arsenal did to construct Ashburton Grove on time and budget.

Spurs’ project was estimated to cost around £400m but that has now officially rocketed to £850m with the figure not expected to stop there. In April, the Guardian reported it could pass the £1bn mark before it’s complete and, as you read above, some involved with the project think they have already surpassed that figure.

It’s no surprise Spurs were the only Premier League club to buy nobody in the summer window.

To contrast, the Grove cost £390m.

Some Spurs fans (and media) will point to an ‘accelerated’ and ‘ambitious’ schedule Spurs allegedly attempted to open their stadium this season, however, they actually began work on it in 2012 after announcing plans in 2008 and submitting planning applications in 2009. It was then revised in 2010 before building started in September 2012.

Construction on Arsenal’s stadium started in February 2004 after purchasing the land in 2000. The ground opened, on schedule and budget, on 22 July 2006.

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Writer. Feminist. Dreamer. Gooner. Owner of, writing about Arsenal since 2008. Sometimes found in the Guardian, & elsewhere talking queer issues, politics & football. If in doubt, assume sarcasm.