Wolves' South Bank rail seating work hit by delay
Wolves’ work to install rail seating has been hit by a delay, meaning the South Bank will not be fully kitted out for tomorrow’s game.
Wolves are the first Premier League club to introduce rail seats – a step closer to safe standing – and the stand was supposed to be transformed for the start of the season.
However, the Express & Star understands there has been a delay on some of the building materials, and only around half of the stand has had the rail seats fitted thus far.
The work at Molineux will not be done in time for tomorrow’s Europa League qualifier against FC Pyunik or the first home league game of the campaign, against Manchester United on Monday.
Wolves announced in May that all seats in the South Bank – officially known as the Sir Jack Hayward Stand – were to be replaced with rail seats, with all seats in the North Bank quadrant also being fitted with ‘an independent barrier’.
Safe standing is not allowed in the top two tiers of English football.
But a recent change in legislation means that seats incorporating rails in-between are permitted.
Former Wolves defender Sam Ricketts’ Shrewsbury Town and Scottish giants Celtic, who play in leagues where safe standing is allowed, have already incorporated similar examples of rail seats into their stadiums.
Wolves made the ‘progressive and innovative’ move after 97 per cent of South Bank season-ticket holders were in favour of it. The plan was approved by the local safety advisory group and the Sports Grounds Safety Authority.
West Midlands firm Alderdale Stadia Seating began the work earlier this summer, with a total of 5,434 rail seats to be installed.
Wolves host Pyunik, from Armenia, tomorrow night (7.45pm) in the Europa League third qualifying round second leg.
Nuno Espirito Santo’s side head into the clash with a healthy 4-0 lead from the first leg, which took place in Yerevan last Thursday.
Wolves are expected to give some of their fringe players a chance to impress, and they will likely face Italian side Torino in the play-off round. Torino are 5-0 up after the first leg against Shakhtyor Soligorsk, from Belarus.