Wembley For Sale: England On The Move?

Thursday's news that the FA are considering the sale of Wembley Stadium will have consequences for the national team.

An offer of £600m is on the table from Fulham owner Shahid Khan although the businessman will be buying with another hat on, that of the owner of NFL franchise Jacksonville Jaguars.

The FA would also keep hold of the commercial revenues generated by the sale of Club Wembley seats and hospitality and say that the sale would allow them to invest heavily in grassroots football facilities up and down the country.

Writing in The Guardian, David Conn believes that 'For Khan the attraction appears to be expanding the NFL into London and ensuring the Jaguars have pre-eminent rights to be the team who play there.'

This would mean England matches in the autumn being played around the country which is something that many supporters would welcome as the opportunity to watch the national team is spread around (the scheduled friendly against Switzerland in August will be played at an as yet unnamed ground).

It may be that the high-watermark of England attendances has already peaked as the nature of qualification for World Cups and European Championships mean a number of low-profile fixtures.

Gates have been remarkably high for some of those games, even glorified training sessions against the likes of San Marino or Andorra.

Keeping Wembley for the glamour matches would ensure sell-outs but the logistics of the national team are only one part of the calculations that the FA must make.

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