Juve will kick off new era

Reign­ing Serie A cham­pi­ons will con­test Bet­way Cup to launch foot­ball at West Ham’s Olympic Sta­dium

The Wharf - - Sport - Giles Broad­bent

West Ham will raise the cur­tain on their new home with a top-class match against Serie A cham­pi­ons Ju­ven­tus. The two teams will com­pete for the Bet­way Cup at the Olympic Sta­dium on Sun­day, Au­gust 7, at 1pm.

There is likely to be a full house of 60,000 at the Strat­ford venue as the home team bed in a week be­fore the next Premier League sea­son starts on Au­gust 13 and a day af­ter the Com­mu­nity Shield.

It will be an es­pe­cially in­trigu­ing match for de­fender An­gelo Og­bonna, who joined the east Lon­don­ers from the Ital­ian club last sea­son. He said: “When I was told we were open­ing the new sta­dium with a match against Ju­ven­tus I could only smile, be­cause it is the per­fect game for the oc­ca­sion.”

In a joint state­ment, West Ham co-chair­men David Sul­li­van and David Gold said: “We are de­lighted to be mark­ing such a mon­u­men­tal day in West Ham United’s his­tory by wel­com­ing one of the world’s big­gest clubs to our fan­tas­tic new home.

“It was al­ways our in­ten­tion to open the new 60,000-ca­pac­ity Sta­dium at the Queen El­iz­a­beth Olympic Park with a fix­ture fit­ting of the oc­ca­sion and the visit of the reign­ing Ital­ian cham­pi­ons Ju­ven­tus is most cer­tainly that.

“We are hugely ex­cited and hon­oured by this won­der­ful open­ing fix­ture against a his­toric club that shares many of the val­ues we cher­ish here at West Ham.

“There has been an enor­mous amount of work done over the past few years to ready the sta­dium for our first game and we can­not wait to show our fans and the wider foot­ball world how in­cred­i­ble it will look.

“This will be a game you’ll want to tell your grand­kids you were there – Au­gust 7 just can’t come soon enough.”

West Ham United man­ager Slaven Bilic said: “We hope this will be the first of many games against Europe’s top sides at our new home as we be­gin the jour­ney of turn­ing West Ham into a team ca­pa­ble of com­pet­ing with the best teams from across the con­ti­nent.”

Mark Noble and An­gelo Og­bonna un­veil the Juve tie

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