Spurs new stadium: videos, pictures and reactions as the £1bn ground opens

Tottenham Hotspur fans have waited a long time to see the north London club move into their £1bn new stadium but that dream has finally become a reality.

Spurs’s Under-18s side had the honour of playing the first match and a crowd of 28,987 watched on as the Tottenham youngsters beat Southampton’s Under-18s 3-1 on Sunday. Spurs starlet J’Neil Bennett, 17, scored the historic first goal.

The Under-18s clash was the first test event to be held at the stadium. Then next Saturday 30 March around 45,000 fans will watch a Spurs legends team take on an Inter Milan legends side. Sky Sports reports that Paul Gascoigne is set to play for Spurs Legends.

The first Premier League match to be played at the 62,062-seater stadium will be a London derby between Tottenham and Crystal Palace on 3 April. Spurs will then host Manchester City in an all-English Champions League quarter-final first leg on Tuesday 9 April.

It won’t just be English football being played at the biggest club stadium in London. The NFL will also use Spurs’s new home for regular-season American football matches.

Pochettino: our dream became true

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino could not hide his delight at the club’s new home. Quoted by the London Evening Standard the Argentine said: “My feeling is unbelievable. It’s so difficult to explain with only a few words. We all feel the same, so excited. I think I got the same feeling when we left the last day at White Hart Lane.

“We were crying, now the first day here at the new stadium we feel the same emotion. We are going to cry. Our dream became true.

“We need to say thank you to first [chairman] Daniel Levy. In 2001 when he first realised that dream, it made it possible to be here today. He deserves a round of applause. And the whole board. A lot of people made the dream a reality.

“Thank you to fans to be patient for 2.5 years when we play at Wembley and all the problems of moving. Now I think the efforts paid off. It’s going to be amazing. It’s going to be a huge impact for the club.”

Reactions to the new stadium

Jack Rosser, London Evening Standard: “A first glimpse of Tottenham’s new stadium takes the breath away, and will leave many forgetting the setbacks, delays and trips to Wembley over the past two seasons. The wait was more than worth it. Nothing has been handled particularly well regarding the delays since the start of the season, but Tottenham’s new home sits resplendent as one huge ‘thank you’ to the club and the fans. The remainder of the season should be fun back in north London.”

Simon Stone, BBC Sport: “It felt very much like the first day of the season, when optimism abounds and everyone is keen to get started. The sun shone, the stadium opened and 17-year-old J’Neil Bennett has a memory that will last forever. Spurs are home.”

Ian ‘The Moose’ Abrahams, talkSPORT: “This is the best stadium in this country, and best I have seen on my travels around the world. But this sort of thing is subjective, make your own minds up when you come here.”

David Hytner, The Guardian: “Wow. Every supporter in attendance seemed to be wearing the same childlike expression – eyes widening in amazement, lost in wonder – when they entered the bowl.”

Matt Barlow, Daily Mail: “Tottenham’s new stadium may have opened late and over budget… but it has a special quality: this £1bn ground has retained an essence of the old White Hart Lane and the spirit of Spurs.”

Gary Mabbutt, former Spurs captain, writing in the Daily Mail: “From the moment I walked out on to the pitch it felt like home. I’ve been there every step of the way, from conception to completion and my big concern was always that it wouldn’t feel like the old place. But this feels exactly like the old White Hart Lane.”

Paul Hayward, The Daily Telegraph: “Premier League stadium building is now an arms race and Tottenham’s 62,062-seat mansion is an escalation. So rapid are the consumer-experience upgrades and technological leaps that good new stadiums can quickly be made to seem, well, not dated exactly but certainly overtaken. Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium remains magnificent, but Tottenham’s new ground is a further architectural jump, with a microbrewery, separate NFL entrance and retractable grass playing surface so that gridiron and football can co-exist without turf wars. In London, Chelsea, who appear hemmed in by Stamford Bridge, will be the most envious of the capital’s clubs.”

Spurs new stadium: in pictures

Tottenham’s Under-18s side beat Southampton in the first match at the club’s new stadium


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