this week, starting with an item by Jacquelin Magnay in her Sydney Sun-Herald
sports column, it’s been suggested in the print media that the proposed $80-120
million Gold Coast NRL stadium development, has the Gold Coast City Council
favouring Carrara as its preferred option.

is news to Gold Coast Mayor Ron Clarke after his council recently voted to begin
immediate negotiations to buy land to locate any new stadium at Robina, rather
than redeveloping the existing currently AFL-configured Carrara on land already owned by the
council. Carrara
would only be considered if Robina is priced out of its ballpark!

how come two Sydney newspapers are erroneously
claiming the council prefers Carrara?

Clarke says that there are a few councillors opposed to almost
any decision he supports. But they’re also firm NRL supporters, and by pushing the
Carrara barrow and its redevelopment as a rectangular stadium, it would put
paid to any notion of Carrara as a future AFL ground option. Certainly the AFL
is well aware that any NRL Carrara linked-future is bad news for the league.
It confirmed this week it is already certain to schedule one or more 2006
regular season AFL games at Carrara,
because of early season fixture disruption caused by the unavailability of the
MCG due to the Commonwealth Games.

the local Gold Coast NRL bid team seeking a 16th NRL expansion team
licence is also firmly behind Robina as its preferred stadium option, could it
be the NRL itself would much prefer to get behind Carrara to outflank any future moves by the
AFL? Certainly these Sydney
stories flying in the face of a current council decision would suggest somebody
is stirring the stadium pot?