Stadium receives Strachan approval

Gordon Strachan


Scotland manager Gordon Strachan described London Stadium as 'a wonderful arena' after visiting West Ham United's new home for the first time on Saturday.

The former Aberdeen, Manchester United and Leeds star was in town for our 1-0 win over Hull City, whose squad contains several Scottish internationals, and revealed to that he had been eager to see the stadium at first hand.

“It’s my first time here and I’ve been very impressed,” said Strachan. “When I arrived I was having a cup of tea and Trevor Brooking’s wife said I looked a bit nervous. I said: ‘I just want to get out and look around!’

“It’s a wonderful arena and fantastic for West Ham.” 

It’s my first time here and I’ve been very impressed

Gordon Strachan

Strachan, who was appointed national team boss north of the border in January 2013 following a 14-year club managerial career with Coventry, Southampton, Celtic and Middlesbrough, also spoke from experience when he insisted the Hammers can look forward to a bright future in their new surroundings.  

“I took over at Southampton in their first season at St Mary's and they hadn't won a game there until October,” he said. “It takes time to fully feel like home for everyone and I can see that is the case here.

“Players can find it difficult and have to get used to the little things that you only notice if you’ve played the game. Even things like a different type of grass on the pitch.

“At Southampton I had us training at the stadium twice a week when I started, just to make sure the players got a feel for the pitch.

“It does take a while for it to feel like home, but it will once you fill the stadium with new memories.”

Strachan was present on Saturday to run the rule over some of his international charges – goalkeeper David Marshall, defender Andrew Robertson and midfielder Robert Snodgrass all started for Mike Phelan’s team – ahead of their next 2018 World Cup qualifier against Slovenia in March, before the visit of England to Hampden Park in June.