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If the Newcastle owner's lead prompts a flood of new stadium titles the possibilities are endless

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The Independent Football

Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley's decision to rename St James' Park the Sports Direct Arena has proved unpopular with fans. With potential income from allowing a commercial sponsor to be associated with a famous stadium worth millions of pounds a year, Chelsea and others are also said to be looking into the possibilities. We offer our suggestions for them, and for some other clubs once their existing deals run out.

 

Manchester United would attract the greatest interest if they sold the naming rights to Old Trafford. Pret A Manger, for example, could supply prawn sandwiches as well as a new name, but there would surely be no better option than the Virgin Trains Stadium. Virgin's London to Manchester service brings the majority of United fans to home games and they seem to have their own version of Fergie time as journeys overrun.

Chelsea's Russian ownership and some of their players' well-documented love of a night out might make Smirnoff a natural sponsor, but since the freehold of Stamford Bridge is still owned by supporters, perhaps they would seek something more in keeping with their history. The close links between the club and the Chelsea pensioners – not to mention the ageing first-team squad – would make the Saga Stadium a good fit.

Liverpool's waterfront is in danger of having its status as a World Heritage Site withdrawn, but not far away is a place where a glorious past is commemorated on a fortnightly basis – is it really more than 21 years since that last League title? – and that's Anfield, perhaps one day to be known as Unesco Field.

Across Stanley Park, Everton are for sale and so are most of their players if the price is right, while new signings are likely to be from the bargain basement. Goodison is ripe to be renamed eBay Park.

Tottenham Hotspur are thinking of moving, so White Hart Lane may disappear anyway. What to call the new place? Ledley King's knee swells up if he gets out of bed too quickly, Michael Dawson is out again with a long-term achilles problem – if Spurs could ever get everyone fully fit, just think what sort of team they could put out at their new InjuryLawyers4U Stadium.

It's a shame that Fulham owner Mohamed al Fayed sold Harrods, or the club would have an obvious stadium sponsor.But for a team that goes to piecesthe further it travels from the banks of the Thames, one possible re-branding of Craven Cottage would be as the Homebase Stadium. Amile or so north, QPR were recently sold by one Formula One team owner to another – so how about renaming Loftus Road WeBuyAnyCar.com Park?

Aston Villa have some pretty embarrassing "celebrity" fans, including distinctly non-Brummie David Cameron and Hove-born mockney Nigel Kennedy, but Prince William is also reputed to be a Villa fancier, so maybe he could persuade his dad to stump up some of the royal profits to rename the club's ancestral home Duchy Originals Park.

Blackburn Rovers owners Venky's could follow Mike Ashley's lead and rename Ewood Park after one of their own products, and there are a lot to choose from – they don't just produce chickens, but also many veterinary pharmaceuticals. The death-metal sound of their anti-lice treatment could work well. After all, what relegation rival would relish a trip to MegaCide Vet Park?

The clubs that have already sold their stadium naming rights could, we suggest, have made more appropriate choices. Arsenal's Emirates Stadium is noisier than the Highbury "library", but that's because it holds 20,000 more people. Even so, the atmosphere is more bookshop than bearpit, so welcome to the Waterstones Stadium.

It was once quite trendy to like Manchester City and they had something of an alternative image, but getting too big, too rich and too corporate and wanting to be bigger than everyone else doesn't make you many friends. They should play at Starbucks Stadium.

Bolton lost 5-0 to Stoke last season, beat Stoke 5-0 this season, have developed a passing game, but kept their reputation as a long ball/set-piece team. Forget the Reebok and change the ground's name to the Confused.com Stadium.

Stoke's own ground has an exposed position, creating a microclimate that renders it freezing on the warmest August day. Maybe it should be called the Damart Stadium.

Wigan Athletic have already changed their ground's name once, from JJB to DW, but something more romantic than mere initials is surely called for. Something redolent of getting away from the hustle and bustle of crowded places to the wide-open spaces in Wigan's stands – National Trust Park perhaps?

As for Newcastle themselves, if you're going to rename St James' after 119 years, you need a backer steeped in local folklore, with an impeccable Geordie lineage, and representing the high seriousness and nobility of the recent history of the august organisation that is Newcastle United FC. It has to be The Viz Arena.

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