Southampton Under-18s Coach Lauds Fantastic Tottenham Hotspur Stadium After Long-Awaited Opening

After several months of delays, the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium has finally opened on Sunday as Spurs and Southampton's Under-18 sides christened the state-of-the-art pitch - 679 days after the final match at White Hart Lane.

Tottenham ran out 3-1 winners in the stadium's first game in front of over 28,000 people, with Spurs youngster J'Neil Bennett writing his name in history as the first goalscorer at the new ground.

J'Neil Bennett

Speaking to ​Southampton's official website, the Saints Under-18s coach Paul Hardyman said: “It’s a great experience for these lads playing here in such a fantastic stadium and it is lovely.

"Some of them might not ever play here again. It’s a day that they’ll remember for the rest of their lives," Hardyman continued.

First team manager Mauricio Pochettino was in attendance on a historic day for the club, and the Argentine boss was openly emotional about the new ground, calling it a 'dream come true'.

The scheduled opening was back in September but multiple construction and safety issues pushed it back a further six months and forced ​Spurs to extend their temporary stay at Wembley Stadium.

The match was the first of two test events required for the stadium to achieve its safety certificate, with the next event scheduled for 30 March when a team of Tottenham legends will face their Inter counterparts in front of around 45,000 people.

The first competitive match at the £1bn stadium will take place on April 3 as Spurs host ​Crystal Palace in the Premier League, which will be preceded by an opening ceremony. 

Source : 90min