English Championship rugby league club Sheffield Eagles will return to the South Yorkshire city in April after sealing a five-year deal to play all its home games at the new Community Stadium at Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park.
The Eagles agreed the deal with the Stadium’s owner, Scarborough Group International (SGI). With the 2022 Championship season due to commence on January 30, the Eagles will play their opening seven games on the road before moving into their new home for the clash against London Broncos on April 15.
The Eagles have a long history with Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park having played at the former Don Valley Stadium up until 2013 and then returned to the city in 2018 before moving to League One football club Doncaster Rovers’ Eco-Power Stadium while the new Community Stadium was developed.
Due to feature a three-storey, covered grandstand with initial seating for 758 spectators and total capacity for up to 3,900, alongside 23,000 sq ft of commercial space and ancillary facilities, the Community Stadium is currently under construction and is due to be completed in March.
As well as becoming a permanent home to the Eagles, it will also be available for community use. Liam Claffey, general manager at the Sheffield Eagles, said: “We are looking forward to re-establishing our base in the city of Sheffield once again.
“Now that the deal is signed our focus is on working with Scarborough Group International to ensure we’re able to deliver the best game day experience for our supporters, corporate partners and community stakeholders, and we look forward to welcoming them all to the Community Stadium in the coming months.”
A new arena and stadium were included in January 2021 amongst projects totalling more than £200m (€239.6m/$274m) for the further development of Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park.
Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park was established after the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games in an effort to deliver whole population improvements in health and wellbeing. It is said to be the world’s only Olympic legacy park outside a host city.
Stephen Marriott, operations director at SGI, said: “Sheffield Eagles have a strong and growing fan base in the city, and this, combined with the investment we’ve made into our Community Stadium will give fans more opportunities to experience the action at a first-class venue. We look forward to working with Sheffield Eagles on this partnership.”