Liverpool and Everton: The case for a ground share

by Michael Wade

Thursday, October 7th, 2010
 

An aside from the pages and pages of, quite frankly boring, takeover talk at Liverpool this week has been the re-emergence of a peculiar possibility, a ground share with Everton.

This is an idea that has been mooted several times in the past but has never come to fruition but now, more than ever, it seems like a logical step that would be beneficial to all parties involved.

Let’s look at the cold hard facts. Both clubs need a new stadium. One of the reasons they are unable to compete with the likes of Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal and now Spurs and Manchester City on and off the pitch is because of their antiquated grounds. Even West Ham are looking to do something about it, and Tottenham will only continue to stride ahead if they push on with their new ground, as looks likely.

As only one example of the above, Arsenal have reaped the benefits of a new ground commercially (even if they have chosen not to exploit this in the transfer market) by making the most of a huge fanbase, a large amount of executive boxes and huge amounts of business opportunities.

This is something that could easily be replicated by Liverpool and Everton together, both have the means to sell out a bigger stadium than they do now, generating more income, and being the only sides in the city they stand to monopolise all potential commercial possibilities in one fell swoop.

Without something getting sorted soon the Merseyside sides could face going the same way as Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United to end up on the footballing scrapheap fighting for their lives, and that is not an idle assertion.

Everton have been crying out for investment for years and are still not even remotely close to securing it. Fair enough, David Moyes has done admirably up until this point to keep the team competitive but running a club of that size on a shoestring budget won’t do forever. Something will give and it is most likely to be Moyes – this is something they can’t afford, the club are about as likely to be able to seamlessly replace him as they are to win the Champions League this season.

Liverpool meanwhile may have new ownership incoming, but as their fans know from recent experience the new guy in charge will not necessarily keep his promises. It is easy to come in talking of paying off debts, investing in the team and getting the club challenging at the top of the table again but it is all talk until it happens.

Both are clubs on their knees and nothing would help them get back on to their feet and into the modern age quicker than a brand new stadium at half the price.

If Bayern Munich, Inter Milan and AC Milan, all infinitely more successful than Liverpool and Everton in the past twenty years, can do it then it’s time for Merseyside to stop trading on a successful history and make strides for a successful future.

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  • DFB

    Cleared of debt (if true – we’ll see), Liverpool can afford the payments on a new stadium along the Arsenal model.

    This shouldn’t be a surprise, free of ownership debt, many clubs across the country have gone for the build now pay later approach, with different size stadiums according to their fan base.

    Everton is a different matter, at least without a ‘little help’ or a sudden upturn in finances.

    One probably can afford a stadium, one definitely can’t.

    Which raises the question, when does the campaign for Tottenham and West Ham to share a new ground start?

  • john finnegan

    share with the blues, ok does not sound to good, how would it, the ground would have to be 80000 at least with each side having @ least 30000 season tikets, rest would be at the doors.
    we all no it could work, but the problem starts with the muppets who rant and rave, yes when growing up in liverpool we had banter, but now it seems the we have banter and idiots who wanna cause trouble, id say at derbys we should have red/blue scarfs and show the rest of UK, the scouse humour and pride is back,

  • Chris Connell

    What you sensible people seem to discount is that we are bitter rivals. Cold hard facts don’t enter into it.

  • ste

    F*ck “Ground Share” and F*ck the press and media agenda trying to insitgate one!, go campaign for Man Hoof and Mercenary City to share a ground!.

  • Bill

    They tried to make me share a ground but I said ‘no, no, no’
    Yes I’ve been down but when I cheer up you’ll know know know
    We need our own grounds but Kenny and Kenright think it’s fine
    They tried to make me share a ground but I won’t go go go

  • Adam Webster

    Until Liverpool sort their finances out, they should not even consider moving.

    A new stadium brings with it debt problems – look at Cardiff and Southampton who’ve had well documented problems since moving to their new grounds.

    Once Gillette and Hicks have gone (they will go soon) the club will need a top-to-toe audit and the new owner to make a cast iron guarantee that the problems suffered over the recent years will NEVER happen again.

    I can’t see why, with a bit of financial backing from the private sector, Liverpool cannot have a 80,000 capacity stadium around the docks – maybe as part of a regeneration scheme? Port Vale may have once had ‘The Wembley of the North’, well Liverpool’s new ground could be the ‘New Wembley of the North’. Integrate transport hubs there and Bob’s your uncle!

    This is an ideal time to do it too – the market has bottomed out and constructors are desperate for contracts. If it can be sorted soon, with council and community backing, then Liverpool will have a very bright future.

  • dexylongshot

    Lovin the lyrics Billy boy!!!

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