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Planning permission has been granted for Premiership side Fulham to upgrade their Craven Cottage Ground.

The £5.4m redevelopment will be completed for the start of the 2005 season and will raise the capacity to 22,000.

New floodlight will be erected and seats will be bolted into the old terraces.

Chairman Mohamed Al Fayed said: “I am delighted to fulfil the dearest wish of our fans to take us home – albeit temporarily.

“Craven Cottage has a warm place in my heart. Its beautiful riverside setting gives it a special atmosphere and it is closely bound up with the history of this great club.”

Al Fayed is still hoping to move the west London club to a new 30,000 capacity stadium but became resigned to move back to the Cottage after a location for the new ground could not be agreed.

The club will continue to share with Queens Park Rangers at Loftus Road until the work is complete.

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