Gary Neville wants to help support Salford stadium plight

Drew Darbyshire

Manchester United legend Gary Neville wants to help Salford in their stadium plight, according Red Devils executive chairman Paul King.

Salford held a fans’ forum last night, where King and commercial director George Harborne addressed supporters about the club’s ownership and their future at the AJ Bell Stadium.

Salford will be playing at the AJ Bell Stadium until at least the end of the 2022 season, and it was revealed that the club had attempted to put together a bid to purchase the AJ Bell Stadium, which they groundshare with Sale Sharks rugby union club, but it wasn’t financially viable for the club.

King revealed that during the planning of the AJ Bell Stadium, the club budgeted for average attendances of 8,000 to make it financially viable. However, their average attendance since their move has been 3,365 and they have only had more than 5,000 fans just 16 times out of 143 games.

King said that staying at the AJ Bell is unaffordable without impacting the playing budget and if the club was to be relegated from Super League, it would lose its central distribution money, which would likely require the Red Devils to become a part-time club.

King revealed he had a meeting with Salford City FC co-owner Neville on Monday to discuss a potential move to Moor Lane.

He said: “I had a meeting with Gary Neville on Monday. Gary wants to help.

“Whether Moor Lane would pass RFL criteria, we don’t know yet. Salford are one of the parties who are looking at buying the stadium.”

On the possibility of moving to Moor Lane, King replied: “It is a possibility. Gary Neville does care about what happens to the original Red Devils.

“It’s a better option than expecting the council to build another stadium, they’ve already done that for us before.”

The council responded: “Gary and the company he is a part of has a long lease at Moor Lane, so there would be discussions needed. That’s where we can come in and help.”

King added that there would be an option there to train at the AJ Bell and have their offices remain there whilst playing their home games at Moor Lane.

King stated that Salford City Council are actively supporting the club in securing a new home in Salford.

For a full thread on Salford’s fans’ forum last night, visit the club’s Twitter feed here.