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New stadium a ‘top priority’ for NYCFC

New York City FC sporting director Claudio Reyna has stressed that finding a new stadium remains a “top priority” for the Major League Soccer club.

The franchise, which is owned by City Football Group, has played at Yankee Stadium, home of Major League Baseball team the New York Yankees, since it launched in 2015.

The club has said on numerous occasions that it would like to move into a stadium of its own but so far plans have not come to fruition.

In 2017, NYCFC presented a bid to redevelop part of the Belmont Park racetrack into a new 26,000-seat venue. The club eventually lost out to a rival bid from NHL ice hockey team the New York Islanders, which plans on building a new 18,000-seat arena on the site.

“We continue to explore a few options … It’s absolutely a top priority for the club and we know it’s an important decision,” Reyna told ESPN FC.

“We have to get it right. It’s a decision for the next 50 years for this club. There’s a lot of work going into it. It’s extremely important.”

The dimensions of the baseball field at Yankee Stadium mean that NYCFC’s pitch is one of the smallest in MLS, and some fans feel the distance between supporters and the players has had an adverse effect on the atmosphere.

Reyna added: “We love the support we are getting when we play at Yankee Stadium, but look forward to having a stadium for sure.”

Recent reports have suggested that the club is considering a new stadium site in the Bronx, with an announcement possible before the end of the year.

Image: NYCFC