Martin Johnson has called on Tigers fans to recreate Welford Road’s “fortress” atmosphere at the Walkers Stadium.

Johnson said:

It’s a wrench. Leaving Welford Road with all its years of tradition and history won’t be easy.

But it’s the right move for the club and if everyone gets behind it, it is possible to recreate the atmosphere.”

Welford Road consistently sells out (for those that know the ground that comes as no surprise – squeezed between two of Leicester’s busiest roads) as a 16,800 capacity ground – but the Walkers Stadium holds 32,500 people.

Welford Road has become a very intimidating place for opposition teams.

But we need the new stadium to feel like home and that’s the challenge that the club and its supporters face – we need to get it right from the start and make Walkers Stadium our new ‘fortress’ from the word go.

Neil Back added:

It’s a very emotive issue, but if you look at it from a business, commercial and logistical sense – it’s a no-brainer. The fans’ support over the years has been fantastic. I hope that wherever Leicester plays, the fans will follow.

That’s a challenge to the fans, really, to make the new stadium a cauldron as well.

I think there will be a lot of emotion initially, but I believe it’s the right thing to do for the club to push forward and become the best in the world.

As a professional player, you want to play at the best possible facilities.

In terms of training, we’ve got the best training facilities of any club side in the world, but we haven’t as a ground and the pitch is vital.

Everyone at Welford Road knows that the pitch cuts up a bit and, as a player, you always enjoy playing on a football pitch as it’s a great surface to play on.