Has Stoke City the capacity for change?
It makes no difference if fans fill an expanded Britannia Stadium capacity only four or five times a season (as propagated by Tony Scholes today).
The reasoning behind expanding the ground capacity goes much deeper than current attendances or results; it is about the future culture of Stoke City Football Club long after the Coates era has been and gone.
All the pluses and minuses regarding the ground expansion have already been thrashed out numerous times (see: http://www.thisisstaffordshire.co.uk/Stoke-story/story-12730309-detail/story.html#axzz2MtJ3caas).
And for Peter Coates to mitigate that they will see how season ticket sales go before they make a final decision on upping the capacity to 30,172 is almost tantamount to emotional blackmail.
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Besides, many were hoping the final ground swell would be upped to over 31,000 (if a feasibility study was undertaken on other areas of the stadium). This would generate a bigger, more professional appeal for the club indicating to the wider audience that Stoke City are in the Premiership to stay.
There is strong feeling amongst Stoke supporters that they want to experience a bigger atmosphere at the club in this, their era.
To dangle the attendance issue on a string to tempt Stoke fans to accept the current footballing status quo is a foolhardy mistake.
The lucky ones who have experienced big crowds of 30 and 40,000 at Stoke City know first-hand how important this issue is.