By Brian Keir
This is second part of my look into the Stadium Issue. Here we look at just some of the reasons why we need a new stadium.
Competing With Other Top Teams
While not small Anfield is undersized compared to our rivals – Old Trafford has 76,000 seats, the Emirates has 60,000, and Chelsea can count on Abramovich for match day revenue.
Until we have a new stadium, we will not be able to compete with the top teams in terms of match day revenue.
Which despite TV deals, Sponsorship and other forms of revenue is still one of main sources of revenue for Liverpool.
The Surrounding area of Anfield
For anyone who have visited Anfield and the surrounding area knows, the area is in desperate need for re-development.
I personally lived in Anfield for a few years as a child, the street i lived is now completely empty of residents and its a similar story for most of the housing and buildings with abandoned business and derelict houses a common sight.
This is due to lack of any investment in the area.
Liverpool has already made a commitment with the council to aid development of the area to the sum of millions of pounds. The reason?
Liverpool has received several grants from the Council and the Government towards the stadium to help towards the regeneration of the whole area.
Liverpool also has several planned property redevelopments in and around the new Anfield Stadium area, that should generate millions of pounds to help towards costs.
Liverpool will need to sell there naming rights of a new stadium to cover some of the massive costs it would entail to build.
Carlsberg Liverpool’s former shirt Sponsor has already shown an interest in naming rights a long the lines of “The Carlsberg Anfield Stadium” and I’m sure would several other companies would also make a bid. The price could easily reach well over £100 million.
This is however not a possible funding option If Liverpool redevelop Anfield.
Fans would not want any renaming of the old stadium and wouldn’t be as attractive to potential sponsors were as a brand new stadium with no name in place would be.
There is several reasons why the club have dismissed redeveloping Anfield several times over the years.
Anfield is completely surrounded by Terraced Housing, demolishing them would cause several issues and long planning despite the club purchasing up all the housing years ago.
The size of a redeveloped Anfield would also not come near the 70,000 stadium capacity Liverpool would need to compete in the long term.
New planning permission would also have to be sought and as we have seen before it can takes years to get permission from the Council and then Government for building work and construction.
While all the work was taking place Anfield would have several if not all stands closed during that period – this would severely affect revenue in the short term but more importantly stop a lot of fans seeing the game.
The new stadium however has full planning permission done and work could almost start immediately if the funds were in place.
While a redeveloped Anfield might meet the clubs needs for the next ten years or so its simply not a viable long term solution.
Eventually some time in the future we will need a new stadium.
Most clubs in the league are looking into rebuilding or moving to a new Stadium.
West Ham recently won the race to take over the Olympic Stadium. Tottenham despite loosing out on the Olympic Park also have planning permission for a new ground.
The thought of a bigger/redevolped Anfield is nice it is still a pretty old ground compare to modern football standards with restricted views in the Main Stand and old wooden Seating.
Liverpool need and deserve the best state of the art facilities to compete with not just English Clubs but also European Clubs into the future a new stadium with state of the art facilities would go a long way to insure we remain among the elite for way into the future.