West Ham has had many highs and lows over the years, after being relegated to the Championship in 2011, the team secured promotion back to the Premier League in 2012. It seems that the team's fortunes are on the rise having secured a new home stadium. The current home of the West Ham soccer jersey is the Boleyn Ground, commonly referred to as Upton Park.

History of Upton Park

Upton Park is one of the oldest football stadiums in the country, it opened in 1904, and has been the home ground of West Ham United ever since. Throughout the 1990s Upton Park has been extensively redeveloped, the stadium is now all seated with a capacity of 35,016. There has been an increased demand for capacity over recent seasons despite their brief dip into the Championship.

West Ham's history is steeped within the terraces at Upton Park. On match day the stands are filled with fans adorned in the West Ham United football shirt, accessories and merchandise. As demand has increased so has ticket prices, many fans have complained about the rising costs of watching West Ham play at home. Even with average ticket prices of over £40 per ticket the stands are full and demand outweighs capacity at nearly every game.

Need for a New Stadium

Since 2003 there has been increased discussion of increasing the capacity at Upton Park. However, as plans have appeared to be progressing the teams disastrous performance and subsequent relegation have halted progress. After England won the bid to host the Olympic Games in 2012, with the subsequent building of new stadiums and sporting venues, an alternative option arose for West Ham United.

In preparation for the games a new stadium the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, also known as the Olympic Stadium was built in Stratford East London. Even prior to the stadium being finished in 2011 the bidding was underway to decide the Post-Olympic use of the stadium. On 18th August 2010 the bidding opened with West Ham United formally declaring their interest.

Eggert Magnusson the then chairman of West Ham was keen to make the Olympic Stadium the new home of the West Ham United football shirt. David Gold and David Sullivan, who were also keen on a move to the Olympic Stadium, took over the club in 2010.  Rival London club Tottenham Hotspur also made a bid for the stadium however, after initial discrepancies regarding the athletics track West Ham United emerged as favorites to win the bid.

Success for West Ham United

Boris Johnson, Mayor of London supported West Ham's bid further boosting their chances of success. The announcement of the winning applicant was delayed until the Olympics were over, however West Ham remained firm favorites. On 22nd March 2013 it was finally confirmed that West Ham United was the successful applicant. The club has now signed a 99-year lease for use of the Olympic Stadium. The club plans to move into its new home ready for the 2016 - 2017 season.

Redevelopment of the stadium is now underway; the club and fans are excited at the prospect of moving to what will be the 4th largest football stadium in England. The design of the new West Ham stadium shows an anticipated capacity of 54,000 football fans on match day. It is hoped that with an increased capacity there will be cheaper to tickets available for hard-up fans.

Paying for a West Ham soccer jersey and match day tickets can amount to a huge expenditure for valiant supporters. With a bigger stadium to fill and more costs it has never been more important for the team to retain their Premier League position. The team has been performing well throughout the 2013 - 2014 season and is currently sitting mid table, a great place to be! Hopefully the start of a promising and successful future at the Olympic Stadium!