English Premier League football club Tottenham Hotspur has been issued with a warning by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) following complaints concerning an advert which claimed its new stadium would be the ‘only place to watch UEFA Champions League in London’.
The advert ran until June this year and was looked upon as a light-hearted swipe at London rivals Arsenal and Chelsea, who both failed to qualify for European club football’s elite competition this season.
However, Tottenham has since been hit with multiple delays to its new stadium meaning that it is unlikely to host Champions League football as claimed this campaign. A 2-1 win over PSV Eindhoven at Spurs’ temporary home of Wembley Stadium on Tuesday kept the club’s hopes alive, but it would need victories over both Inter Milan and Barcelona in the final group games to have any chance of its new home staging knockout matches in the New Year.
Tottenham’s advertising has since been reported to the ASA by an Arsenal fan and one other complainant. The club will not face an investigation, but has instead been issued with an ‘Advice Notice’ by the Authority, advising it to avoid making claims in future advertising that it cannot deliver upon.
A spokesperson from the ASA told the Evening Standard newspaper: “We carefully assessed complaints (2) about an outdoor poster ad by Tottenham Hotspur Ltd which stated “The only place to watch UEFA Champions League in London…Time is running out to secure Premium Seats at Spurs’ New Stadium”.
“The complainants challenged whether the ad was misleading because the building work of the new stadium has not been completed, therefore it is unlikely customers will get a chance to watch Tottenham play in the Champions League at the new stadium.
“While we considered there were potential problems under our advertising rules we did not consider the issues raised were so significant as to warrant a full formal investigation. This case was assessed and dealt with via an ‘Advice Notice’. In this instance, we contacted Tottenham Hotspur and advised them to avoid making claims in future advertising that they cannot fulfil; to avoid disappointing customers.”
In a statement issued last month, Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy said that all home games up to and including the Premier League fixture against Wolverhampton Wanderers on December 29 would be staged at Wembley, where Tottenham has been playing while work at the new ground continues.
The new stadium had initially been due to open on September 15 for Tottenham’s home fixture against Liverpool. Tottenham had already announced that all Champions League group stage matches would be played at Wembley with work ongoing at the new 62,000-seat facility, which is being built next to the club’s old stadium, White Hart Lane.
Image: Tottenham Hotspur