West Ham beat Tottenham to win Olympic stadium backing

West Ham plan to retain the athletics track at the stadium in Stratford

West Ham have won the backing of Olympic bosses in the battle for the 2012 stadium, BBC London has learned.

Olympic Park Legacy Company executives have decided the offer from the club – which would retain the athletics track – is better than Tottenham’s rival bid.

They are expected to ask the company’s board to announce West Ham as the preferred bidder on Friday.

The government and London’s mayor will take a final decision but are expected to back the OPLC’s recommendation.

An OPLC spokesman said: “It is pure speculation to say that a decision has been made.

“Our board meets on Friday. There will be presentations by OPLC officers of both bids and a vote to recommend a preferred bidder.”

It would be a surprise if ministers and the mayor, Boris Johnson, overturn the recommendation of OPLC executives, who have spent the last few months discussing the various plans with both clubs in detail, when they reveal their decision in the coming weeks.

Reacting to the decision, Olympian javelin thrower Steve Backley said: “West Ham was the only real option.

“It was the only really viable bid that satisfied all the criteria.

“The Tottenham bid would have involved removing the running track which just wasn’t an option.”

But Lord Sugar, former chairman of Spurs, said: “It’s totally flawed – it will be a white elephant.

“It will be a disaster for the taxpayer and we’ll end up having a mothballed Olympic village.

“The Tottenham proposal is for an iconic anchor centrepiece.”

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