National Rugby League side Melbourne Storm is "preparing to feature in another grand final" after placing a "hold" on corporate suites at ANZ Stadium worth almost A$100,000 ($73,000), according to David Riccio of the Sydney DAILY TELEGRAPH. A firm A$2.65 ($1.93) premiership-favorite with the TAB, the Storm is "attempting to become the first NRL team in 24 years to win back-to-back titles." The club needs to "overcome an injury-plagued Cronulla" on Friday. Of the four clubs "remaining in the premiership race," it is believed only Melbourne "asked to keep three suites" worth A$28,000 ($20,000) each aside for the grand final. Each of the premium private suites on the "plush corporate level of ANZ Stadium" caters for 20 people and includes a gourmet food and beverage menu. An identical invitation to place a hold on corporate suites was sent to fellow preliminary finalists Cronulla, Sydney Roosters and the South Sydney Rabbitohs. Each of the three Sydney clubs confirmed they "politely declined the offer" (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 9/19).
Barclaycard Arena Hamburg completed a two-year project to bring the venue into the digital age. The investment includes the addition of more than 220 Wi-Fi hotspots, hundreds of new digital signage screens, digital menu boards, a way-finding solution and a specially-developed app for visitors. Customers can use the Arena App to make cashless drink orders, which can then be collected from dispensaries and outlets around the venue. The app also allows users to set preferences, favorites and reminders. Anschutz Entertainment, in cooperation with Tripleplay, installed 314 screens which are individually- and centrally-controlled (Barclaycard Arena Hamburg).
The workforce on Tottenham's £850M ($1.1B) stadium has reportedly been reduced and "work has slowed" following the announcement of the project’s delay, according to Zak Garner-Purkis of CONSTRUCTION NEWS. Sources said that the stadium "will not be ready until the first week of January." The insiders claimed they would "not be surprised" if the club "wrote off the season," playing the remainder of the '18-19 fixtures at other venues in anticipation of a summer completion date. Although subcontractor staff numbers have fallen on the site since the delay was announced, sources said that construction manager Mace and project managers employed directly by the club have since "increased their presence on site." One source said, "The numbers have been cut significantly. Lots of the companies on there have sent their people to other projects. But the job is coming along at a good pace now." The source added that there had been a "shift in emphasis," with "greater attention to detail since the delay was confirmed." The source said, "There was a lot of corner-cutting [before the delay], but it's definitely gone the opposite way now" (CONSTRUCTION NEWS, 9/19).
CLUB REBUTTAL: SKY SPORTS reported Tottenham "dismissed reports" claiming its new stadium will not be ready before the end of the year. It comes after reports that the new stadium is "set to be finished" in the first week of January. A Tottenham spokesperson said, "We have always said that we would issue updates for test events and official opening as soon as we have confidence in our project managers' and contractors' ability to deliver against the revised scheduled of works. This remains the case and speculating on unsupported dates such as this is irresponsible" (SKY SPORTS, 9/19).