City’s stadium could eventually hold more than Arsenal’s.Premier League champions Manchester City have announced that phase two of the Etihad Stadium expansion project is underway.
Six thousand seats will be added to the venue, which was originally built for the Commonwealth Games in 2002.
The Etihad’s new capacity at the start of the 2015-16 season will be in excess of 55,000, making it bigger than Liverpool’s Anfield home and Newcastle United’s St James’ Park.
Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium and Manchester United’s Old Trafford will be England’s only two club stadiums that can hold more people.
However, the Etihad could eventually eclipse the Emirates too, as phase three could see the capacity reach 61,000.
There is currently a 7,500 waiting list for season tickets at City.
The average attendance at the Etihad last season was 46,948, which was the fourth highest in the Premier League, behind United (74,394), Arsenal (60,013) and Newcastle (50,395).
Liverpool’s average gate for a league game was 44,656, while Chelsea’s was 41,481.
Sunderland, Everton, Aston Villa and Tottenham Hotspur completed the top ten with average crowds of 40,117, 37,731, 36,080 and 35,808 respectively.
The lowest average attendance in England’s top flight was 20,406, which was recorded at Swansea City’s Liberty Stadium.