Flit­ting for the

New sta­dium pro­posal was un­pop­u­lar, but chair­man knows Aberdeen need it

The Herald - Herald Sport - - LADBROKES PREMIERSHIP - MATTHEW LIND­SAY

PROJECT BRAVE may be the ti­tle which an SFA work­ing party has given to their wide-rang­ing pack­age of pro­posed changes for the youth football set-up in this coun­try. But it could just as eas­ily have been what Aberdeen named their plan to move from Pit­to­drie, their spir­i­tual home since they were founded way back in 1903, to a new sta­dium on the out­skirts of the city.

Sug­gest­ing the club leave a beloved ground to which sup­port­ers have made a weekly pil­grim­age for decades and have a strong emo­tional at­tach­ment was al­ways des­tined to meet vo­cif­er­ous op­po­si­tion.

Propos­ing the north-east club de­part the venue of their fa­mous win over Bay­ern Mu­nich – Paul Bre­it­ner, Di­eter Hoe­ness, Karl-Heinz Rum­menigge et al, in the quar­ter-fi­nal of the Euro­pean Cup-Win­ners’ Cup in 1983, and many other mem­o­rable tri­umphs was guar­an­teed to ap­pal many.

Yet, Stewart Milne, the Aberdeen chair­man and ma­jor share­holder, and his fel­low di­rec­tors have been un­de­terred by the of­ten hos­tile re­sis­tance their scheme has met and the as­sorted set­backs which they have en­coun­tered along the way.

It un­der­lines the im­por­tance of the move to the club which has fin­ished sec­ond in the Lad­brokes Premier­ship in the last two sea­sons and is chal­leng­ing strongly to end as run­ners-up once again this term that they have per­se­vered for so long in the face of so much.

“We started this back in 2001,” said Milne, the wealthy lo­cal house­builder who joined the Aberdeen board in 1994 and has been chair­man since 1998. “We have been at this for get­ting on for 17 years now.

“It ran­kles that we have put so much into this to get these fa­cil­i­ties de­liv­ered and have hit so many hur­dles along the way. But if we are still sit­ting at Pit­to­drie in five years’ time, we are go­ing to have se­ri­ous prob­lems to con­front.”

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