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Dundee bosses favour groundshare


Levein and Scott favour groundshare

By Jim Spence

Dundee United manager Craig Levein and Jocky Scott, his counterpart at city rivals Dundee, have said they are in favour of the clubs sharing a stadium.

Levein said there was "too much tradition" to consider a merger of the clubs but he and Scott would welcome a move to a new purpose-built ground.

The United boss said: "It would be brilliant for both clubs. I think it would help both enormously."

United's Tannadice ground is just a few hundred yards from Dundee's Dens Park.

The clubs agreed in principle to sharing a new stadium when Scotland made a bid to host the Euro 2008 Championship. However, the opportunity was lost when the bid failed.

Asked if he would be in favour of the clubs merging, Levein said: "There is too much tradition for both football clubs to just cease to exist and for there to be one team. People have too many fond memories of both clubs.

"But I would love to see maybe the government funding a shared stadium. A nice new 20,000-seater stadium in Dundee that both teams share would be a fantastic thing for the city."

The Tangerines' stadium has a capacity of 14,223 and, with the club sitting joint-third in the Scottish Premier League, their average attendance this season stands at 8,253.

Dens Park and Tannadice Park
The Dundee teams' grounds are located side by side in the city

Dundee, who are in their fifth season in the First Division, have a ground capacity of 13,565 and this season's average attendance is 5,144.

Scott, who made over 200 appearances for Dundee and is in his third spell in charge of the club, says that he could see no reason why the clubs would not be in favour of sharing a resource.

He told BBC Scotland: "Throughout Europe big clubs have done it - the obvious one being the two Milan clubs - and it hasn't done them any harm, so I couldn't see the two clubs being against it."

There was opposition among Dundee fans in 2004, notably from the Dee4Life group, when the idea of selling Dens Park and sharing Tannadice was mooted, with the club then in administration with debts of around £20m.

A move by both teams to a new stadium would be more palatable to both sets of fans than either side selling their stadium and moving to their rival's ground.

Yet while many would argue that a shared purpose-built stadium would make financial sense, the emotional attachment to the old stands at Dens Park and Tannadice is held strongly by others.

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see also
Dundee Utd boss wants bank help
30 Oct 09 |  Dundee Utd
United fan buys Dundee's stadium
24 May 09 |  Dundee
Melville outlines Dundee ambition
26 Jun 09 |  Dundee
Fans oppose groundshare
12 Mar 04 |  Scottish Premier

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