‘Critical importance’ – Football finance expert comments on Aston Villa’s stadium plans
Villa Park is set to receive huge investment in the coming years as Aston Villa owners Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens look to upgrade the facilities ahead of the 2028 European Championships.
Plans centered around the stadium’s north stand, which would see capacity rise from 42,749 to more than 50,000 during the first phase of the changes, are due to start next summer. Speaking about the plans, chief executive Christian Purslow provided fans with the following update on Villa TV, where he said: “The past few months have been very busy. We have been working with a team of expert advisers on all aspects of the potential redevelopment of the stadium and the Villa Park site.
READ: Villa could make £100m from player sales as Gerrard plans transfer calls
READ: Aston Villa’s brutal fall leaves Steven Gerrard and Johan Lange facing tough questions
“As I explained to our fans before Christmas, this was brought about for three main reasons. As we try to improve the fortunes of Aston Villa and enable the club to compete at the highest level, it is essential that we increase our revenue base.To be able to employ the best footballers, we need to be able to increase that revenue.
“Expanding the side of our stadium is one way of doing this. We also have over 22,000 Villa fans on a waiting list who cannot see their team. How do we get more people into the ground? How can we enjoy hospitality when in villa park and how can we improve our aging business and commercial buildings we now have some preliminary designs that achieve these three key objectives and they are focused around the north end of our stadium.
Increasing revenue received on matchdays and in other ways is clearly a key ambition for the club’s hierarchy, and could be of “critical importance”, according to football finance expert Kieran Maguire.
Speaking to Football Insider, Maguire commented on the importance of stadium renovations in terms of club revenue. Where he said, “I think Purslow is trying to control the controllable. TV revenue is determined externally, so they have no real control over that.
“They can offer people who show up at the stadium better facilities and opportunities to spend their money. If they can get them in earlier and out later, that improves business uptake, merchandise sales, and everything that goes with it. A club as ambitious as Villa must seize these opportunities. It is of crucial importance to increase these trading revenues.