Indian Super League franchise Delhi Dynamos is mulling over shifting its home base from the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium and the Delhi University Stadium has emerged as a preferred location, among other options.
The JLN which has hosted home games for the franchise since its inception in 2014, has witnessed a steady decline when it comes to attracting crowds during match days over the years. Despite boasting of 60,000 capacity, the average attendance for the ISL 2018-’19 season was just above 7000 – the third lowest after FC Pune City and Mumbai City FC.
“Our preference remains Delhi University stadium since the JLN stadium is multi-purpose. Delhi University is much more compact and the closer distance between the spectators and the players makes it a great environment. It was our practice base two years ago so we know the ground very well,” Ashish Shah, CEO of the Delhi Dynamos told Scroll.
The DU Stadium is situated around 20 kilometers away from the JLN and has a modest capacity of 10,000 seats, 7500 of which are temporary. Although talks are still in process, Shah said the reason behind the switch was to attract as many students.
“Although the JLN is quite big, the stands are not always full because of a low fan turnout. Plus they [fans] sit very far away from each other.
“We made a proposal to DU, keeping in mind that we will be able to involve a lot of students. Since there are a lot of colleges based around Delhi University, more students can get involved. That is our demographic,” he added.
The DU Stadium was inaugurated in 2010 and has hosted rugby matches for the Commonwealth Games in the same year apart from having a separate training venues for netball, boxing, women’s wrestling and athletics.