Liverpool confirm first home game of new season will go ahead as planned, but there’s one catch

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Liverpool have confirmed that the Reds’ first home game of the 2023/24 season will go ahead as originally scheduled, but with a reduced capacity at Anfield.

Jurgen Klopp’s side will host Bournemouth on Saturday 19 August, having requested to begin the Premier League season with an away fixture due to the ongoing redevelopment of the stadium.

However, while the venue will be operational for the clash against the Cherries, the upper tier of the revamped Anfield Road Stand will remain closed for now, with an expectation that the additional capacity will be introduced on a phased basis during subsequent home games (LFC official website).

It means that the stadium will be only take 51,000 fans for its first fixture of the new season, 3,000 fewer than what the venue could hold prior to redevelopment and 10,000 fewer than what it’ll be able to take once the works are completed (The Athletic).

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In being allowed to host the Bournemouth game as per the original Premier League fixtures list, Liverpool will at least avoid a repeat scenario of 2016/17, when they began with three successive away matches due to the Main Stand renovations at Anfield being finalised.

The club have also removed any ambiguity there may have been regarding that fixture, which’ll at least enable fans to make travel arrangements for the day, and it’s understood that season ticket holders for the upper tier of the new stand will be accommodated elsewhere within the stadium (The Athletic).

However, it’s certainly not ideal to begin the campaign at a reduced capacity, and the contractors have indicated that it’ll be October before the works are fully completed, so the Reds could have around half a dozen home games before it’s all finalised.

The delay isn’t what anyone would’ve wanted, but we’re sure that the new Anfield Road Stand will look magnificent once it’s fully open for business, and the volume from the extra 7,000 fans should make the venue even more atmospheric than it already is.

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