Brighton groundbreaking plans for purpose-built stadium

Guro Bergsvand of Brighton & Hove Albion celebrates with teammates
Guro Bergsvand of Brighton & Hove Albion celebrates with teammates during the Barclays Women's Super League match vs Manchester United (Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images)

After a season of record attendances across the Women’s Super League, Brighton have confirmed that the club are exploring the possibility of a custom-built stadium for their women’s team.

The Seagulls play most of their home ties at Crawley Town’s Broadfield Stadium. Brighton have made use of the stadium since 2018 following the re-launch of the English top flight. Last week, Brighton and Hove Council granted permission for the stadium’s construction.

The project aims to pave the way for Brighton to construct the inaugural stadium dedicated exclusively to women’s football. Currently, among the 12 top-flight teams, Manchester City stand alone as the club playing home matches in a purpose-built facility. Gareth Taylor’s side shares the Joie Stadium with the club’s academy teams.

Most clubs in the league presently share lower tier men’s stadiums. However, the trend of using the clubs’ primary stadiums for prominent matches is on the rise. Arsenal garnered a league-record crowd in excess of 54,000 at the Emirates on the opening day of the season.

“The sky’s the limit”

Speaking on the plans, Brighton and Hove city council leader Bella Sankey said: “I’m ecstatic that the council has voted, unanimously, to support Brighton and Hove Albion to bring the women’s team back to Brighton with a purpose-built stadium.

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“We want to set a new standard, building the first women’s football stadium in the country to provide investment and support for our women’s team and to show local girls that their contribution to sport is valued just as much as the boys. Just look at the meteoric success of our men’s team once we got Falmer Stadium built, going from near extinction to now playing in Europe.

“We know that the sky’s the limit for our women’s team if they are given the same opportunities and support.”

Head coach Melissa Phillips was also keen to share her delight.

“This is another massive first step in our journey back to Brighton and we are excited for what is ahead for this club, community and team,” she said. “It really emphasises the council’s commitment to the women’s game and the club’s overall ambition towards being a competitive top‑four WSL side.”

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