As reported by Salford Star over the last year, Salford Reds' stadium move has been fraught with financial problems almost from the minute the club got the licence to play Super League rugby. One of the conditions of that licence was that the club would move to a new stadium, and the Reds duly promised a £35million, 22,000 state of the art stadium. But only days after the licence application was successful, Redcity Developments went financially up and under. At the time the RFL wouldn't comment, saying only that "the matter is a technicality and won't affect the development going ahead."
Now, after Salford City College, which was to have filled the physical and financial gap in the development, has had its own constant funding problems, the RFL has lost patience and issued a letter to Salford Reds (and four other clubs in similar circumstances), saying that if it doesn't get its act together it can kiss goodbye to the Super League.
"Five clubs put forward their intention to build new stadiums, with a number creating a lot of publicity" says Gary Tasker, RFL's director of development "Some clubs are at a more advanced stage of the planning process than others so we felt that, a year on from awarding the licences, it was appropriate to remind all the clubs concerned of their commitment to upgrade their current facility or move to a new stadium and the potential implications any failure to do so may have on their next licence application."
Reds fans have been constantly kept in the dark and given loose promises over the stadium's progress. After the last setback at the end of June, Chairman John Wilkinson said "The people of the City of Salford deserve a high-quality stadium along with one of the best college facilities in the country, and that is what we will give them."
Now Wilkinson, and Peel Holdings which took over the stadium project after Redcity collapsed, have around two years to make the stadium happen. Or the fans might just turn against Mr Salford and coÖ