The race for promotion to the Premier League is well and truly on, with eight runners and riders in contention for promotion this campaign – either through an automatic promotion spot, or a playoff position. Bournemouth are currently second in the table with two games remaining and are red hot favourites to secure automatic promotion.
Their supporters will be excited for Saturday’s clash at Dean Court and the stadium will be packed to the rafters. Although the capacity is just 12,000, Bournemouth have turned their ground into a fortress this year and will hope that, if they are promoted, their supporters will be equally as supportive during their time in the Premier League. We discuss the financial implications if the club decide to expand their stadium, and whether or not it is completely necessary…
Additional TV revenue
The club can avoid expanding their ground because of the additional television revenue that Bournemouth will receive for featuring in the Premier League. It used to be estimated that a club would earn, on average, £80 million more in England’s top flight than the Championship, but the latest gigantic television deal will surely mean that figure has risen.
Either way, there will be potential to invest additional funds into the stadium but their primary aim must be to avoid relegation and bring in experienced Premier League players to help the club stay in the top flight. If they can avoid relegation at the first time of asking, they should start to consider expanding the stadium.
More people will buy shirts
Naturally, more people will purchase Bournemouth shirts because they are in the Premier League. Local citizens will buy the jerseys as a way of showing that they support their local community and to show that they are proud of their team.
Home matches will sell out
It would be a worthy investment to expand the stadium as the majority of home matches next season would sell out. Bournemouth’s supporters have been excellent over the last few years, and the Cherries would find it very easy to fill another couple of thousand seats. If they installed another 6,000 seats – as proposed earlier in the season – then they would have a capacity of 18,000, which they would more than likely be able to fill on a weekly basis.
Bournemouth don’t need to expand, as the increase in revenue through television rights, merchandise and season ticket sales should help to cover wage costs. However, they have the option to – and they should certainly consider it. It is extremely likely that they could fill their ground on a weekly basis and the increased support may help them in their tough first season after promotion. Their first aim, however, is to secure automatic promotion and avoid the lottery of the playoffs.