Villas-Boas backs stadium bid
Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas has backed the Blues' bid to repurchase the freehold of Stamford Bridge. Villas-Boas insists a move to a new stadium would be the right thing for the club. Opposition from supporters' groups to the Blues' plans to buy out the shareholders of Chelsea Pitch Owners (CPO) - most of whom are fans - appeared to grow this week with the launch of the 'Say No CPO' campaign. The club's desire to regain ownership of the land on which Stamford Bridge sits - which has belonged to CPO since the 1990s - has been seen as a precursor to a move to a new 60,000-seater stadium. The prospect of relocation has divided supporters, although the leaders of the 'Say No CPO' campaign have insisted they are not against it on principle and plan to vote no to the club's proposal at an extraordinary general meeting on October 27 simply to force them to provide more information. Chelsea manager Villas-Boas was confident today chairman Bruce Buck and chief executive Ron Gourlay had supporters' best interests at heart, saying: "The most important thing for us it to position ourselves regarding our future. "The club has made a wise decision in that sense." Although Chelsea have yet to decide whether to move, Villas-Boas was fully in support of the prospect. A lifelong Porto fan, the 33-year-old recalled when his former club moved into the new Estadio Dragao eight years ago. He said: "When Porto left the old stadium to go into the new stadium - the Dragao - nobody liked the name, nobody liked the site, nobody liked the stadium, and nobody liked the idea of moving. "Because the historic presence of the old stadium on that site meant something enormous for the fans. "But if you go back to Porto now, there is not one single person who remembers the old stadium. "Everybody is in love with the new stadium. It's a beautiful stadium, it's a magnificent site and everybody is happy with the move that was done. "Because it took us into the future, brought us more revenues in the end, and made us play in a magnificent stadium. "That's my experience of the past. "I'm not in a position to say how the fans will react, and how they are reacting. "In the beginning, disappointment regarding the loss - or not - of an historic site can mean something. "But eventually, if we move or not, things will be for the best for sure."
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