13 Jan 2017

San Diego Chargers moving to Los Angeles

9:59 am on 13 January 2017

San Diego Chargers are moving to Los Angeles next NFL season, ending sometimes tense negotiations for a new stadium in the city where the sports franchise has played for more than five decades.

Chargers' quarterback Philip Rivers.

Chargers' quarterback Philip Rivers. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

The Los Angeles area will have two NFL teams after having had no franchises for more than 20 years.

The nation's second largest city had no NFL team from 1994 until the St. Louis Rams began playing there last year.

Chargers owner Dean Spanos in an open letter on the team's website said San Diego has been the squad's home for more than 55 years and the city shaped the team's "identity."

"But today, we turn the page and begin an exciting new era as the Los Angeles Chargers," Spanos wrote.

In November, San Diego voters rejected a ballot measure that would have raised hotel occupancy taxes to help pay for a proposed $1.8 billion downtown stadium project.

"The Chargers will make our NFL tradition even richer, and give sports fans everywhere one more reason to be in Los Angeles," Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said in a statement.

The NFL Network reported that the Chargers will play the next two seasons at 27,000-seat StubHub Center in the Los Angeles suburb of Carson, California, until the new stadium the Chargers will share with the Rams in Inglewood is completed.

The Chargers will eventually join the Rams as a tenant of the futuristic $2.5 billion stadium being built in Inglewood, which is projected to open in 2019.