Liverpool chief insists on new Anfield stadium progress

Liverpool Managing Director Ian Ayre insists that the club is making progress on stadium plans.

New Anfield - original design AFL

The stadium issue which has been swirling around three sets of Liverpool owners for nearly a decade remains ongoing, and is proving an increasing source of frustration to supporters who have seen a number of other clubs build and move into expanded or new stadiums in that time.

The reds have so far incurred costs of around £50M without a solitary brick being laid, more money spent on a new stadium than has been spent on improving the playing squad since 2007 (£49.6M V £47.2M).

Plans for a new stadium on the Stanley Park site are wholly dependent on finding a lucrative naming rights partner which could cover around half of the anticipated £300M cost.

Ian Ayre said:

“There is progress and we are still in dialogue on both fronts.

“We have got more dialogue going with the Anfield residents than we ever have, as with other stakeholders in and around Anfield.

“We want to explore both options to a solution and I think it’s fair to say if we continue making progress in that area, it might move faster than we originally anticipated.

“I think it’s also fair to say that we are already fairly well down the line with a couple of major brands who have shown significant interest in naming rights for a new stadium. Part of the problem is that people assume that because we don’t make a major announcement, because we can’t show any spade in the ground, that nothing’s gone on and no progress has been made.”

“The most important thing for us, especially under this owner, has been about certainty on the stadium.  There’s been too many times when people have said ‘we’re doing this’ and then it didn’t happen.

“We are not going to make comments that we’re doing something until we’ve got certainty.

“And that certainty quite often is in other people’s hands.

“In the case of staying at Anfield that certainty is with residents in and around that area that we would need to convince. When we have that certainty we will make the announcement and move on it.

“It’s only right to make announcements when you’ve got the right solutions. It’s alright for people to say Liverpool’s a big football club – 60,000 seats, why don’t you just go and get on with it? But go and look at the economics of that – of a £300million build for 15,000 new seats.

“It’s pretty hard to make that stack up. The work is going on and a decision will be announced when we’ve got certainty.

Despite Ian's comments on the possibilites of a redevelopment of Anfield, it is believed both the council and the club are more in favour of the new stadium route.

32 comments on
Liverpool chief insists on new Anfield stadium progress

  1. build 80k stadium agree totally,, but will never happen for simple economics , will cost to much, though I do  believe 60K stadium is very short sited, seen aswell the population growth for the next 10-20 years will see masses off more people wanting tickets and we will be back in the same position. So they need to build with the ability to add more levels on to the stadium to increase capacity as required.

    • If the design of a new stadium or an expanded Anfield includes a future expansion, 60k is a good place to start. Fill 60k, and then reach higher at a later date. 

  2. None of you have the slightest idea of the types of owners you have at Liverpool. As a Boston Red Sox fan for well over 20 years I can tell you that John Henry and co. have been the best thing to happen to our club in its history. So far they have brought us two world series titles and have modernized our ball park every year since their arrival. They are cleaning up the mess they were left by the previous owners, give them time. They know how to run successful sports franchises. I am confident they will turn your fortunes around.

      • Notborn, I am not a native speaker and I started learning English with English, but then I moved to America. You insult people because they use different kind of English words. That shows how ignorant you are, mate. Sport franchise has the same meaning as sport club or team or side.

    • I think you do have a point.  However it worries us a little more than maybe you think it should because their knowledge of / experience of the english league and what it takes to win is less than their knowledge of experience of american sports.  They had said as much.They claim to have sought the advice of some experts in the game, but one of our biggest frustrations is that those who do not support the club do not understand the club or the fans.  The fact that Rafa benitez is not being considered for manager proves the point!  The experts thought Roy hodgson was the best thing since sliced bread before he became our manager, and almost got us relegated.  yes he is now the england manager, but that doesn’t change the fact that he came perilously close to destroying the club!

      We don’t know who FSG’s advisors are, and we are a little concerned.  We understand the mess they inherited, but we can’t take everything they say as gospel.  The previous regime were out to make a quick buck, and when they realised that wouldn’t be possible, they immediately tried to cut costs and almost destroyed the club.  The new owners have not put any money in, and we don’t have the draft system here.  We haven’t seen much progress.  How do we know that they haven’t already thought this is a project that is unsalvageable?  We don’t cause they’re not saying anything at all!

      Only 6 managers have won the league in the last 20 years, and of those, only one has won the league with 2 different clubs (over 25 years).  They’ve just sacked one of the six, and the only one who has won the league with 2 different clubs.

      They might have been the best thing to happen to you, but we’re not convinced that their moneyball principles will work here (where this year’s winners of the 3 most difficult competitions in europe (Champions league, spanish league and english league) have all been won by teams that spent over £200m each to assemble.  And thats just for players.  The stadium itself will cost about £400m and FSG look like they only want to invest £20m per year.  The stadium capacity is an issue that needs to be looked at, and its been nearly 2 years since they took over, and nothing’s been done yet!

      • Excellent post. There isn’t the strongest relationship between net / gross spend and success but there is a very strong correlation between wages paid and success. The teams that tend to pay the highest wages tend to have a higher win % than those that pay less. Either way in modern footbal money = success

        My concern is that FSG haven’t really invested that much ‘new money’ into the club, the majority of cash spent on transfers since Jan 2011 has been money that we recouped through player sales. Some high wage earners have been moved on too including Torres, Jovanovic, Aquilani and Joe Cole. We paid large sums for Carroll, Hendo, Downing etc, but there’s no way they’d be on as much as those aforementioned names.

        Meireles asked for a new contract and was rebuffed and rumours suggest we had an agreement to sign Jelavic that was blocked by FSG –  each of these issues relates to money or the lack of it at least. Perhaps it’s not a alck of it but an unwillingness to spend.

        A second issue that bugs me is that, if FSG are so eager to save cash and be wise with their money, why give Dalglish a 3 year deal and then sack him after a season? He’d have had more than two years to run on his deal which means he’d probably have been paid a reasonably large severance. I think most Liverpool fans haven’t been impressed by the way FSG have run the club, particulalry since this managerial saga has occured. We were once renowned for being universally respected by all, keeping our business in house, not speaking, boasting or rubbing others up the wrong way. To put it plainly we had class. These Americans are doing so much to dent that.

        • FSG spent a lot of money to buy the club and erase a large percentage of the club’s debt. Currently the club’s financial situation is rock solid. When FSG bought the club they promised to spend what the club earned, as none of the investors are sheiks. 

          While FSG are learning about English football, they are fully committed to win the Premiership. It isn’t their fault the squad isn’t playing well. With the sacking of a club legend as manager, FSG have shown nothing will get in their way to fulfill that goal in their journey. 

          I suggest the fans enjoy the ride on the journey to the top of the table. It may take a few years but FSG will deliver. 

        • Man you are everywhere in the net defending FSG. Don’t you get tired of it, or are they paying you tonnes of money to do so?

  3. i dont think its about the extra 15000  seats its about executive boxes and corporate facilities,if they put the boxes on all four sides this will increase matchday takings by 40% ad in the cooperate business for non match days then this will increase the clubs revenue by even more ,Although i believe it is right time to build duo to actual building cost its getting the best deal on naming rights for the stadium ,bringing in the financial manager who got us the standard charter deal looks as thou there is something in the pipeline ,i cant see these present owners restructuring the senior managing structure without having plans and a time-scale drawn up,they never promised a spade in the ground in six weeks ,they said they would look at all avenues to see what was best for the future off the club ,some people are complaining about the sacking of kenny ,but in sacking him they are saying 8th place is not good enough ,and despite my believe that kenny dalglish is a legend at our club they are right   ,    

    • You take these latest two Yanks far too seriously, Jay-r. They’ve not the slightest intention of building so much as a brick sh*thouse anywhere near Anfield…!!!

      • if liverpool can get a new kit deal worth over 150 million over six years then ,i really cant see a problem getting a sponsorship deal for the  new stadium worth over 200 million for the ten year naming rights .the cost of rebuilding and lost revenue while the ground was being refurbish would cost more than the 100 million in difference ,building the new ground makes financial sense ,its all about getting the right deal for the club ,liverpool fc is a massive brand i cant see a problem finding a sponsor ,i think the stumbling block is the the american owners offering a ten year deal when other clubs have negotiated deals over 20yrs ,my believe is its not down to them paying for the new ground its down to business its getting someone else to pay for it ,,thats why i believe they will build the new ground and because of the appointment of a high ranking commercial director it would appear that negotiations over a sponsor for the new ground are well advanced  ,   

        • Actually, eventually, the fans will pay for either a new stadium or Anfield redevelopment. Did you expect anyone else to pay for it? I suggest you google club seats and personal seat licenses? 

          This false British idea that a club will go into debt for hundreds of millions to finance either is so lame…

          Maybe for a modest 50 million with a bank loan, but hundreds of millions? What world are you living in?

  4. if the economics for 15000 is not good then build a 80,000 seater lets face it we could use the extra seats as one of the best supported teams in the world and it would create huge revenue. 
    now stop stalling and build the f***ing thing you time wasting tit

    • it has only been a week; i am a senior manager at my work place and if we get rid of a manager, it usually does take carefull consideration and procedures to get a new one in… we are not in mid-season and do not need to rush // i do not see the reference of the “farce” in this statement…

  5. 15000 seats for 300m?The owner also added they can’t get one seat for 1M. It is true if y r only short term.They r just businessmen,they dont have passion on sport. They got cheap price so they bought and see how is going next 5years. If not too much profit they will sell again thats what they do best.

    • I’m afraid you are right. So far as Liverpool football club and its supporters are concerned I very much doubt that these latest two Americans are any better than the last two…! It’s obvious by now, we’re NEVER gonna see a brick laid on any new stadium. While they’ve got themselves a handy couple of options like this to argue over these Jungle Book vultures will shuffle around all day long and won’t never make a move…!!! 

    • It is more than just 15k more seats. The key to either a new stadium or a redeveloped stadium are club seats and seat licenses. At the Emirates, Arsenal FC gets almost half of their match day revenues from the executive vip luxury seats. The same will apply at LFC too,  whether the fans like it or not. 

      To build larger than 60k or so, transit issues involving Liverpool are involved. What is the sense of building larger when no one can get there?

  6. More stalling, more spin, more non answers. These guys are running out of excuses, and soon when their fork tongues are not listened too anymore, they will move on to blatantly shafting us like the previous pair of cowboys did.

  7. 60,000 seats, why don’t you just go and get on with it? But go and look at the economics of that – of a £300million build for 15,000 new seats.

    Ian – Note Arsenal made that decision and Chelsea and Tottenham will shortly!!

    Get real!

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