New York stadium not ready for Championship opener

York’s first home game of the 2020 Championship season against Bradford will be played at Bootham Crescent, the club has confirmed.

Doubts over whether the new LNER Community Stadium would be ready in time has forced the City Knights in to decisive action.

The game on February 9 will therefore take place at Bootham Crescent, where the Knights have called home since 2016.

Chairman Jon Flatman said: “The latest information we have been provided is unable to guarantee that we will be able to play at the new stadium on that date.

“In simple terms, we require – and fans rightly expect – a degree of notice in order to purchase tickets, arrange travel and deliver marketing for what will be a brilliant home league opener.

“To remove that uncertainty we have taken the decision to play the fixture at Bootham Crescent.

“Bootham Crescent in recent years holds fantastic memories of a promotion winning season and an excellent 2019 season. Fixtures between the two clubs at Bootham Crescent have witnessed exciting close games in recent years.

“We fully expect to be in the new LNER Community Stadium for our second home league game in 2020.”

It represents yet another delay in the wait for moving to a new stadium for York.

Planning permission was granted back in March 2015, but construction only began after several delays in December 2017.

It had initially been slated to be ready in time for the 2019/20 football season, with York City FC also due to play their home games at the ground.

The City Knights’ previous home, the Huntington Stadium, was closed and demolished in 2014 ahead of the development of the new stadium.

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