thumbnail Hello,

'Only way forward is to knock it down and start from scratch'

Leyton Orient chairman Barry Hearn has attacked the government and those involved with UK athletics for the current issues affecting the Olympic Stadium.

The events promoter backed Tottenham's bid for the stadium over West Ham's, but only because it is more sustainable and will include demolishing the stadium and building a new one from scratch.

"On balance, the Tottenham bid is far more acceptable to me than the West Ham bid," he told TalkSPORT.

"I've got this thing about sustainable commercial ventures, let's be perfectly honest, West Ham were discounting cup tickets in their semi-final the other day for the Carling Cup and still only got 30,000 people.

"Unfortunately the [Olympic] stadium is poorly designed, unfortunately the stadium is a waste of public money and it's things like that, that the government and the people involved in the Olympics don't want to hear.

"We want to feel good about the Olympics and so we should. What they don't want to hear is that someone messed up, they've messed up big time with this stadium.

"There's no room for an athletics track in this stadium, there is no demand for an athletics track with a 60,000 seater stadium, it's a total white elephant.

"We're all being sucked in as if we're criticising the Olympics, we're not, we love the Olympics but the only way forward for this stadium is to knock it down, take away the athletics track and build a proper stadium.

"As much as Leyton Orient are a small club I would never go [to a stadium] where my fans are 80-yards away from the grass action, it just destroys the atmosphere. You can't hide that, you can't put seats on the running track, it just doesn't work.

"I wouldn't ask my worst enemy to watch football with 80-yards of running track between them and the grass."

Hearn also revealed his worries about the negative effect of the Olympic stadium on his own club, adding: "Whoever goes there is no good news for Leyton Orient, they're both massive clubs and I've likened it to Tesco moving next to the little sweet shop on the corner.

"We are one of the oldest teams in the football league and we have one of the biggest community activity centres in the whole country and I'm saddened to think the legacy of the Olympics may actually be the death knoll of such a well established club.

"I've got to fight very hard to see my little club survive."

Follow Goal.com on . Get the latest football news direct... Check out Goal.com's  page; be part of the best football fan community in the world!

Related

From the web