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Pragmatic Henry Looks to Groundshare

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The new Liverpool owner, John W Henry, is looking into groundsharing with EFC. Henry is not the free spending billionaire that Liverpool would have liked, but the pragmatic businessman who did not build a new stadium when he bought the Red Sox. He is counting his pennies after spending a few hundred million and does not like the idea of doubling that outlay by building a new home for the Reds. Refurbishing Anfield would be his first choice, but that has proven to be a tricky situation, or it would have happened by now.

The second option is to build a new stadium with his neighbours, ours truly, Everton FC. We have been through all this before and most fans of both persuasions abhor the very idea of sharing anything with each other. But there are few options and this one is looking more and more a possibility.

Are we ready to share a home with them? How could it work? What do you think about it?

Henry is a pragmatist. How pragmatic are we?
Albert  Perkins, USA     Posted 04/11/2010 at 04:11:43

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Julian Wait
1   Posted 04/11/2010 at 04:47:06

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I think if it was done right, it could be an architectural, cultural and social statement of the highest order, and could benefit both teams in terms of finance and marketing and on pitch performance.

Done badly, it could be a kitsch, shambolic farce of the highest order and lead to one or both organizations becoming disillusioned.

We would have to be fully equal partners in all ways, which could lead to stalemate non-decision making.

I used to think it made sense to ground share, but it seems a bit like living with your ex-wife to save on your bills and share the mortgage. How would that work out for you?
Russell Buckley
2   Posted 04/11/2010 at 05:17:49

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As an Australian Toffee I might not have as deeper connection to the stadium as some but after some recent experiences I?m now against ground share. I just got back from a European holiday in which I visited Goodison amongst a number of other UK stadiums.

I also caught an Inter Milan home match at the San Siro:
- Inter are a great club, with great history
- They drew a big crowd who gave great support
- There were Inter banners everywhere
- The San Siro is a great stadium
Despite all that, I didn?t feel like I was really stepping onto Inter?s home turf. It felt like I could have been watching Inter at any of the other big stadiums around the World.

The difference for me was when stepping into English stadiums you really feel like your at the core of the club. Goodison is at the heart of Everton.

The ground share may work well at some stage but, even if it's pulled off well, a part of the club?s identity will be lost. On top of all that, we still have no money to finance a 50% share.

Tony Waring
3   Posted 04/11/2010 at 08:55:56

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Enough shilly-shallying. Let's go for it. Deep down I think the majority of fans of both clubs would prefer to share a world class stadium than stumble on in the present circumstances ? and I say that in spite of the fact that I love Goodison with a passion.
Martin Clark
4   Posted 04/11/2010 at 08:51:14

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Well we must have some finances available for a stadium or they wouldn't of been wasting so much on possibilities! The Kirby project was a disaster!

I believe we would get a much better staduim than we could afford on our own and I couldn't care less about sharing with the shite as they won't be there when we are apart from at derby days and their always going to be special.

I love going to Goodison, but think it's more about the team and the fans who create the atmosphere.

Liam Reilly
5   Posted 04/11/2010 at 08:47:26

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I would be gutted to leave Goodison. I only get there maybe 5 times a year but its still spine tingling every time I get out of a cab near the mega store and look up at the structure emblazoned by the huge Everton sign.

And it's not just Evertonians who relish the Goodison experience: many notables, players, managers, pundits and supporters in the game have commented on the unique atmosphere generated in the ground.

I for one hope investment can be found to redevelop the Old Lady, to hold onto a unique experience.
Guy Hastings
6   Posted 04/11/2010 at 09:21:03

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If they want to groundshare that's fine, but I don't think the Goodison pitch could take that many games in a season. Mind you, BK could do with the rent money.
Tony I'Anson
7   Posted 04/11/2010 at 09:43:23

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This might sound really stupid... but here goes.... What if there is a ground share but 2 pitches...? What?

Thinking back to King's Dock, they were going to have a removeable pitch so the venue could be used for concerts etc.

So if we ended up with a groundshare, could there not be a replica of the Goodison and Anfield pitches shipped in on match days. Maybe it's an expensive symbolic gesture, but if fans/players felt they were playing on "their" own pitch it may be one way of us all buying into the idea.
Eugene Ruane
8   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:00:47

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I actually surprised myself with this one (that doesn't happen every day)

Ok, given the choice, I choose stay at Goodison (forever!) or build a new ground in Walton/Everton or on The banks of...etc.

NB: That's given the choice.

However if (as seems likely) none of those things are options, I'm not as bothered by the thought of sharing with them as...well, as I thought I might be.

In fact my only real concern is us playing in a stadium that is a third empty and looking like (and feeling like) Boro or Blackburn.

Maybe I'll feel differently if it looks like it might happen.

And I should add that deep, DEEP within me, there is also a staggeringly irrational bit that says "If at any stage it looks like they need us, we should say we're not interested"

(I know pathetic, at 51 I should know better etc blah - just being honest)
Colin Potter
9   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:05:58

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I only share air with them because I have to, no way would I ever share a stadium with that lot!
Liam Reilly
10   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:03:24

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Tony #7
Logistically could never work. Even though pitches these days do have a certain artificial flavour to them, both pitches would still need a certain amount of natural light and would need to be maintained daily. Presumably your idea would require two sets of groundsmen also, which couldn?t possibly work.

I think a shared stadium would probably need to be owned and maintained by an independent organisation with input from both clubs, but all areas of the ground including the pitch would need to be shared across both clubs.
Matt Traynor
11   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:17:50

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We'd still have to find our share of the costs. Bear in mind:
- The EU Objective One (was a big proportion of our Kings Waterfront costs) ship has long sailed
- The UK public sector is reigning in spending

Never mind, no doubt we have the money ring fenced, etc. Or Bill's Hollywood mates have some grand additional revenue plans.
Nick Entwistle
12   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:22:20

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What next? Our armed forces share resources with France?
Larry Boner
13   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:19:05

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Be careful what you wish for. Just read the history of the Allianz Arena and the dire straights Munich 1860 got into when they were sharing with Bayern.

With the board Everton have at the moment I cannot see us finding the money to have a part share in a Liverpool City stadium. That could change if the board sell up to an investor who can finance the project, but in my opinion we would always be the poor tenants of a shared stadium, attendance wise, success wise and revenue wise.

Mike McLean
14   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:31:39

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Anything But Kirkby.

Money will, as ever, be the issue.

If the money could be produced, and it was to happen on an equal footing, then we just have to suck it up and go for it.

There isn't a very long list of choices.
Matt Traynor
15   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:36:24

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Imagine the negotiations. Matchday revenues (and costs) should be apportioned to the teams individually...

BUT ? there should be economies of scale ? do you share these, or apportion based on gate receipts?
AND ? secondary non-football revenue (assuming LCC would permit, given the investment in the Arena). Same question.

It'd be a minefield. Like some have alluded to above, forget who was first etc. we would always be treated like the pikey squatter. Sadly I think our current custodians would accept that if it meant they could be like the Star Trek enemy and Klingon...

Jimmy Hacking
16   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:33:54

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If Everton and Liverpool end up building new stadiums simultaneously a stone's throw apart, it will literally be the most childish, moronic, shambolic act in the history of planet earth.

And you wonder why everybody hates scousers... get a fucking life, go and follow Tranmere if you want to support a small club.

On another note, I would hate it to be some hideous mixture of both club's icons and colours, the only way this should be done is as a completely neutral ground with, say, green seats. I don't want to hear any embarrassing bickering about there being one two many Liverpool crests on the bloody wallpaper or something. The fella who complained about the San-Siro not "feeling like Inter's home ground" is outta his mind, would anyone here seriously not swap Goodison for the San-Siro?
Mike McLean
17   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:46:41

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# 16.

Sadly, Jimmy, yes there are.
Dave Roberts
18   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:44:30

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Don't fancy going all the way to the San Siro for home games.
Jimmy Hacking
19   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:50:45

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Dave Roberts (#18) Then you must have a small-club mentality. its not THAT much farther away than Kirby anyway, and I'm sure Bill Kenwright will ensure that two extra train services per hour leave Liverpool for Milan on matchdays. No car-parking, though.
Dave Roberts
20   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:48:42

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A groundshare scheme is the most sensible option as a business proposition and makes eminent economic sense.

Unfortunately it fails to reflect the peculiar nature of football and its club supporters. Business models do not work well in football primarily because hardcore football club support is as emotionally based as it is cerebral, perhaps more so. I just wouldn't feel comfortable sharing our 'home' with another club.

If that sounds juvenile it probably is... but I can't help it!
Tom Hughes
21   Posted 04/11/2010 at 10:42:25

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Pragmatism is one thing, throwing the baby out with the bathwater is quite another IMO. The real pragmatic approach would be for both clubs to realise the full value of what they have in the historic duopoly that is based entirely on their separate identities and proximity, and then building onto what they've got.

Both Anfield and Goodison can be renovated to form the best stadium face-off in world footy, and it really needn't cost more than sharing, and even if it did, the outcome would be inordinately more valuable in real terms.

I personally don't believe you can rationalise both identities into one stadium (and that's not just a reference to colour of seats). In simplest terms for me, LFC means Anfield, red and white, the kop, and dark gloomy basic stands, where Daglish et al played etc. Everton means Goodison Park, the first true purpose built footy stadium in the world; Blue and white with tall multi-tiered grandstands; Archie Leitch criss cross balconies..... where Dixie and the Golden Vision played, where Pele and Eusebio played and so much more.

How much easier might it have been for kids of the 70s and early 80s to have deserted EFC for the darkside if our identity had not been so strongly defined and established, i.e. if we then shared? The Munich analogy should ring alarm bells for us all... not to mention the fact that, in practically every shared arrangement that is cited when sharing is ever mentioned, both clubs are either actively seeking or have already found their own stadia due to this precise reason.

Sharing also requires complete parity.... (which we haven't got) and, in any case, where is the sense in that in any competitive relationship? It is a complete contradiction!

Duncan McDine
22   Posted 04/11/2010 at 11:41:58

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I just can't see it happening, but I wouldn't be against it. The reason it wouldn't work is that financially we are a lot smaller than them, so, when push comes to shove, we know which way the decisions will go. It's unrealistic to think everything regarding the stadium would be 50/50 and fair.

They're making enough problems for themselves, so it's probably best to steer clear of anything red and/or shite.
Duncan McDine
23   Posted 04/11/2010 at 11:58:06

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Note: When I said I wouldn't be against it, I mean if it were possible to be completely 50/50!!!
Charlie Percival
24   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:03:19

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Look at it this way...would:

Celtic/Rangers share?

Man U/Citeh?

Tottenham/Arsenal?

Newcastle/Sunderland?

Leeds/Bradford?

Villa/Birmingham?

Milwall/West Ham?


Ok some of them aren't as close as us together but they are still the main rivals in terms of geographical distance (I think).
Charlie Percival
25   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:17:14

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Oh, and I didn't answer my own question as it was rheotorical.
Kevin Tully
26   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:07:55

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A major concern for a lot of supporters is a 50/50 share of ownership and any extra income streams.

What if the stadium was built and financed by outside investors? With extra revenue for rent generated from corporate hospitalty, extra gate revenue and concerts etc.

Just take an extra £8k per match @ £30 per ticket, plus corporate revenue, food, merchandise, you could generate approx £600k per month on top of Goodison figures. Enough for half the rent on a £400M stadium ?
Jimmy Hacking
27   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:11:22

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Charlie Percival #24

None of those clubs will probably ever share a ground, but that doesn't mean that not sharing is the right or wrong thing to do.

A big wonderful new stadium at a discounted cost is absolutely vital if Everton, nine-times champions, are ever ever EVER going to compete again. If you'd rather stay in Goodison and come 7th every season that's fine, but I don't find that acceptable. This is literally make or break time. In 30 years time we could very very easily be a Burnley or a West Brom, just another medium-sized club floating about, with old codgers boring kids by banging on about how "I remember when Everton were Champions! Them were t'days."

And for the record (I've been accused of being a Kenwright-ite before) I thoroughly despised the Kirkby idea.
Kev Lacey
28   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:26:41

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Even just at a basic level, it's hard to get your head around sharing a ground with that lot.

What colour would the seats be? Do we have both club badges on the front?

On derby day how will they feel going to the home ground and going in the away dug out, us as fans in the away end at our own ground!

Not for me ta, I'll pass I like my blue seat and trimmings!!

Charlie Percival
29   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:30:19

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Jimmy Hacking,

If a shared stadium with the Redshite guarantees us Silverware as you are implying lets do it.

If it doesnt make any difference then the shit is going to hit the fan. Id rather stay in a decaying main stand than sitting where red shites sit every other week to watch their horible HORRIBLE team
Charlie Percival
30   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:32:31

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It wasn't so long ago Liverpool were the team on Merseyside who had the power, now it doesn't seem that way.

Did they want a groundshare when we were in shit? NO!

We should tell them to Fuck Off and put Goodison on Stanley Park where it BELONGS!!!
Dennis Stevens
31   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:31:00

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I can't see Everton, particularly under the current regime, being able to afford their share of any new stadium.

The only progress I can forsee is that a future Board may start the long overdue process of a phased redevelopment of Goodison Park. This would require less money to be invested up front & could be progressed at a rate determined by affordability & demand. This process should have been part of the long-term management of the club over the last four decades & then the whole groundshare suggestion would be moot.

I have no interest in RS but suspect that further redevelopment of Anfield is the most likely way forward for them too.

Stephen Kenny
32   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:48:00

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This would never come off well for us. Before you know, the press would have us painted as poor tenants, and with our curent board there is no way we are going in 50/50. More chance of winning the lottery on a Monday.

Goodison Park is our home and the greatest players in the history of English football have graced it in the blue of Everton. We should aspire to this again. One good generation of players could make this happen.

Tom Hughes
33   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:48:33

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Dennis ? I think you're exactly right. I can understand people being attracted to the apparent "no-brainer" of ground share, but I am wary of the dilution of so much that defines and therefore adds real value to our club. Knocking us off the "perception" radar once and for all. I am also not convinced by the financial arguments for sharing construction costs in both short and long term.

I can understand the whole stadium fatigue element amongst Evertonians too..... but as ever the fans need to fully assess the options as, as with DK, KD and the general lack of effective stadium policy before now, we may still need to question the decisions and not be fobbed off with false nirvanna's!

Jay Harris
34   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:47:29

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My heart says redevelop GP especially after reading Tom Hughes post.

Most of us have special memories there like the boys pen, Golden Vision, Ball harvey and Kendal, the 66 world cup, the Bayern Munich night all of which should be cannonised in a GP museum of EFC history.

However on a purely financial note I could see the council developing a superstadium with the 2018 world cup in mind and having a 3 way share with EFC and the RS.

Subsidising the development costs could be all sorts of commercial activities like multistorey parking, Sports bars, hotel and restaurant facilities, concerts and also council sponsored youth development activities.

For those who say we cannort afford to do anything the simple answer is we cannort afford to do nothing.

How many people now own their own homes having started out with nothing?

Where there is a will there is a way.

Unfortunately this board does not have the sane enlightenment.
Carl Mesham
35   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:57:38

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I'm in total agreement with Jimmy Hacking, a new stadium (at discounted price even) would be essential for us to be successful. And I would HATE it if the RS got a brand spanking new stadium on our doorstep in Stanley Park and we were left behind still searching for a space somewhere. A new would-be buyer of the club would also be more attracted to the proposition if huge funds for a new stadium weren't required.

And if England win the World Cup bid for 2018, is there any possibility of the government coming on board to build a mega stadium for the World Cup??? Just asking!!!

Eugene Ruane
36   Posted 04/11/2010 at 13:17:42

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Jimmy Hacking, you say..

"In 30 years time we could very very easily be a Burnley or a West Brom"

True, but we could also be a Boro or a Coventry or a Hull.

I'm not saying you're wrong (and I'm probably more for than against) but remember, nobody is GIVING us a ground.

Whatever grants come along, It'll still cost us money we (apparently) don't have.
James McGrady
37   Posted 04/11/2010 at 13:28:13

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Revenues from a groundshare would benefit Everton up a place or two, but I fear a new ground could put Liverpool at the top. It sounds bitter but would anyone really want that?

My main concern is what happend with the Allianz area. 50-50 joint partners then 1860 had to sell their half for fiancial reasons. Now they are in Bayern's pocket, whats to say this could not happen here?

Also why is Anfield redevolpment such a problem? Unlike us they have forced local residents out of the homes. Two entire streets next to it are vacant. We can not expand because all the houses next to Goodison are occupied. I suppose after all we are the peoples club.
John Pickles
38   Posted 04/11/2010 at 13:53:15

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#24
Leeds/ Bradford share an airport though.

One advantage of a shared stadium could be the extra matchday revenue from your average (Norwegian) red nose fan who has got the wrong week. They don't know any of the players anyway so will probably happily sit through our match convinced they cheered 'their' team on.
Jimmy Hacking
39   Posted 04/11/2010 at 12:11:22

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Charlie Percival #24

None of those clubs will probably ever share a ground, but that doesn't mean that not sharing is the right or wrong thing to do.

A big wonderful new stadium at a discounted cost is absolutely vital if Everton, nine-times champions, are ever ever EVER going to compete again. If you'd rather stay in goodison and come 7th every season that's fine, but I don't find that acceptable. This is literally make or break time. in 30 years time we could very very easily be a Burnley or a West Brom, just another medium-sized club floating about, with old codgers boring kids by banging on about how "I remember when Everton were champions! them were t'days."

And for the record (I've been accused of being a Kenwright-ite before) I thoroughly despised the Kirkby idea.
Ian Campbell
40   Posted 04/11/2010 at 13:49:02

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Kev Lacey # 28.

I believe that it would certainly be possible for Everton and Liverpool to have seperate changing rooms and each have our own dugout. I do like the Allianz Arena, couldn't we have something similar that flashes blue when we are at home and red when they are - or something equally original?

As for other comparisons with the Munich situation, I guess we need expert financial advice - if Hicks and Gillette (legends) were still in charge who's to say they wouldn't have been paying us rent in a few years?

I believe a groundshare is the best option, we haven't the fan base of Man Utd or the billions of City and is this offers a substantial saving and allows us an extra quality signing a year then it could be well worth it.

Anything less than equal partners then Goodison it is!
Jimmy Hacking
41   Posted 04/11/2010 at 14:10:11

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Sorry ignore that last post, have no bloody idea what happened there, didn't mean to post at all.
Larry Boner
42   Posted 04/11/2010 at 14:03:30

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Picture this : Tuesday night, 19:45, the new Liverpool City Stadium, 65,000 capacity, sold out for Liverpool's Champions League group game v Internazionale. Sky cameras linger on the singing of YNWA by the massed hoards of Norwegians, Chinese, Cockneys etc as the teams enter the arena... "This ground was built for nights like these" spouts the fawning Andy Gray.

Skip forward 24 hrs, Everton v Hartlepool in the League Cup, 15,000 spread themselves around the vast arena as Z-Cars echoes round the ground, ticket costs of minimum £50/seat slashed by half price to try and fill the empty spaces...

The above may semm like a harsh indictment of a ground share idea, but this is what happened to Munich 1860, relegated to German 2nd Div with average attendance standing at 28,000, while Bayern broke the record for consecutive sell out games and have an almost 69,000 average attendance. 1860 were on the verge of bankruptcy when Bayern saved them by buying out their 50% share in the Allianz Arena.

Do you think the current set up at Everton warrants a new ground opportunity? Does the board have a plan?

Kevin Tully
43   Posted 04/11/2010 at 14:40:02

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Larry, I think you have got that scenario back to front. Liverpool are not the team or club as we used to know it. Hicks & Gillette have seen to that. Their new owners don't have the millions it's going to take to put them back in the Champions League in the short term. Henry has a long term plan for youth to come through, and this will take years.

Everton are closer to the top four as we speak. If a new ground is built with manageable debt, this will make EFC more attractive to purchase than most Premier League teams. Liverpool fans are just coming round to the idea that the glory days are long gone at Anfield. They have got Roy Hodgson as their manager, FFS!!!!

Michael Kenrick
44   Posted 04/11/2010 at 14:46:11

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I was leaning a bit toward groundshare but the comments above, especially an unrefutable analysis from Tom Hughes, has pushed me back the other way ? the power of a compelling TW discussion, eh?

Groundsharing: a sensible idea doomed to fail ? at least from the Everton perspective... or is that us being unnaturally and unjustifiably negative again???

ps: Jimmy... do want me to cut your post (#39)? I couldn't see anything wrong with it though...

ps: James McGrady ? we are no longer "The People's Club". That term has been dropped and I for one am glad. It just sounded so smalltime ? and in any event was certainly far from the truth in terms of ownerwship.

Dave Lynch
45   Posted 04/11/2010 at 14:37:57

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Stephen Kenny #32.
You stole my thunder mate. The press would be calling it the new Anfield, the smug bastards would want a new Kop and we would be associated with a club that has one of the worst reputations for whinging in the world.

Their fans get on my tits big time, having CL rules changed, getting the rest of the English clubs banned from Europe (it wasn't their fault though). Their own fans robbing each other in the CL final and then having the cheek to blame the Greek authorities for not running it properly.

They are abhorent, arrogant, self-righteous arseholes and I want nothing to do with anything they are involved with.

They will, with their arrogant stance and attitude look upon us as tennants and anyway I wouldn't trust Billy Bullshit to broker a deal with a Bombay carpet seller, nevermind that lot.

Alan Clarke
46   Posted 04/11/2010 at 14:59:12

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Eugene's right, we're skint. It doesn't matter what anybody puts forward about a ground share or any other ground move because we can't afford anything. The fact that Beckford plays for us highlights this point.

Unless someone has a spare £100 million+ then we're thankfully staying where we are.
Charlie Percival
47   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:04:42

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IF it's the best stadium in the country, I have no qualms. But it isn't going to be at all. So we may as well either stay at Goodison and redevelop it, or put in a quick sly application for Stanley Park.

Hopefully Elstone knew the Shite were gonna fold and has an application ready to hand in... Imagine the look on all those red faces if we put Goodison on Stanley Park where it belongs. That'd be better than winning the league!

Charlie Percival
48   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:15:21

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Alan Clarke, the Stadium money will be in a different pot, or slice of the cake if you like to call it that.

Surely everyone knows this?
Charlie Percival
49   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:16:17

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Maybe thats why we're kind of a well-oiled machine. Kenwright etc isn't making sacrfices. We're not risking one budget for another. That's a problem to some people, but to some people it would say it's being well run.

A hell of a lot goes on behind the scenes.

I know we have no money in transfers etc, but we do have money which we don't know about; we have enough for a stadium, we could do it if we really wanted.
Anthony Hughes
50   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:21:11

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We dont have a pot to piss in guys. New stadium, shared stadium or upgrades to Goodison ain't gonna happen. We're looking down the back of the couch for pennies to fund our team building season after season. We don't have this mythical stash of money ringfenced for a new stadium or anything else. Got to agree with Alan@46, unless there's a nice 100 million or so thrown at the club we aren't going anywhere.
Michael Kenrick
51   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:27:16

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Charlie ? toungue-in-cheek sarcasm or not? I can't tell...

If not, some basic history:

1) Kings Dock failed for lack of £30M which was (or so we all were assured) "ringfenced". It wasn't.

2) Kirkby, initially "free", would have cost Everton £78M... that's £78M Everton did not and do not have.

"We do have money which we don't know about; we have enough for a stadium, we could do it if we really wanted." ? What are you on about???
Charlie Percival
52   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:32:56

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Just love chatting about stuff.
Michael Kenrick
53   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:34:25

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Chatting? Does that include making stuff up? We don't have anything like enough money to invest in a new stadium. Where are you getting such an idea from?
Dave Lynch
54   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:46:25

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Charles.
What a contradictory load of bollox.
"We do have money we don't know about".
You obviously know about it then, so spill the beans. Or have you missed a dose of your medication.

Anthony Hughes
55   Posted 04/11/2010 at 15:54:52

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Maybe there's a fucking big couch in Bill's house with a shit load of pennies down the back of the cushions.
Mike Oates
56   Posted 04/11/2010 at 16:31:00

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Sign on the dotted line and build it asap. We have no chance to compete without a new ground capable of delivering first rate facilities, with top level incomes.
David S Shaw
57   Posted 04/11/2010 at 16:33:32

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I think we'd lose our identity to all of Europe.

Liverpool are branded everywhere, the stadium will subsequently be associated with them, with us seen as the cheap meffs who play at THEIR ground.

Visually it could look embarrassing too. They have a larger fanbase and so would have larger attendances while we're all sitting mute in a half empty stadium.

Larry Boner
58   Posted 04/11/2010 at 16:42:47

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Kevin Tully - wake up and smell the fucking coffee, we are a club on the road to nowhere, Liverpools worldwide appeal is only bettered by the likes of Barca, Real or Man Utd, we never take advantage of the opportunities to promote this club - the CD Everton game a prime example.
We have, without doubt, been hamstrung over the years by the actions of other clubs, but Mr Moyes has several times put this club on the very brink of fame and success and never been supported to the extent of a Redknapp or even a Hodgson.
The reason why investors were queueing up to take on a £240m debt with Liverpool was because they know they can make a killing, we have Everton currently who are a less attractive proposition than Blackburn !
I always looked at Spurs as a team who were very similar to Everton, fantastic history, but fallen on unsuccessful times, but look at the ground they had similar to Goodison and the improvements they made, the way they fund every manager and they have picked up trophies over the years.
Yes, I know, they are a London team, blah, blah, but there are several London teams and they, over the next few seasons will move to the forefront with Arsenal
They have a visionary board, they have plans, achievable plans, unfortunately we have no plans, not even a plan B.
They played Inter and battered them, European champions, but couldnt batter us, we have the basics, but we dont have the leaders to take us forward.
Adam Bennett
59   Posted 04/11/2010 at 17:17:11

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I wouldn?t share a house with an arrogant, horrible, two faced piece of shit?.. so I?m certainly not going to share a football stadium with fucking thousands of the twats!!

Anyway, now my is rant over, I?ll be a bit more constructive! (and use the stadiums that people have used in the past to justify a ground share, to, hopefully, blow their argument out of the water).

San Siro ? Inter for the past few years have been drawing up plans to build their own stadium, because a shared stadium isn?t working for them.

Delle Alpie ? Juventus have already built, and are now playing in, a new stadium of their own, because a shared stadium wasn?t working for them.

Allianz Arena ? Munich 1860 went to the wall and where forced into selling their stake to Bayern and they are still in shit street, so a shared stadium hasn?t worked for them.

Put simply, a shared Everton/Liverpool stadium (or rather Liverpool/Everton stadium as the whole world would put it) in the long term, will not work.
Jimmy Hacking
60   Posted 04/11/2010 at 17:32:41

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Michael #44 its just that I already did the same post earlier, must have hit "refresh" and it all went haywire. Im bloody useless with computers. maybe I could get a job with Everton as head of media/IT...
Jimmy Hacking
61   Posted 04/11/2010 at 17:32:41

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Michael #44 its just that I already did the same post earlier, must have hit "refresh" and it all went haywire. Im bloody useless with computers. maybe I could get a job with Everton as head of media/IT...
Ray Roche
62   Posted 04/11/2010 at 17:23:30

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Anyone who thinks we would get a fair deal with any groundshare while BK holds the reins should really get someone to give them a wake up call. Everton missed a fantastic opportunity at Kings Dock thanks to soft arse Kenwright. His ring-fenced millions didn't exist. He's an idiot and everytime I look at the Arena I realise just what we missed out on. I wouldn't trust BK to run a Church feté, let alone get a good deal with a groundshare .
Tony Waring
63   Posted 04/11/2010 at 17:25:58

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In contrast to my first post I'm beginning to be persuaded that ground sharing might not be such a good idea after all. But for pete's sake why can't the board develop Goodison, not necessarily overnight but over a period of a couple of seasons ? Why are fans kept in the dark about what must be one of the most urgent problems facing the club ? Then again maybe there ain't no plan - as usual !
Leon Perrin
64   Posted 04/11/2010 at 17:26:33

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Even with their new yank nothing is guaranteed, if we get into bed with them we're propping them up.

The upside to us is what?

We've dealt with hardship and survived.
We should've died a death living in the shade of their period of dominance, but we did'nt.
We're far from the finished article but we still have the strength of our identity, Goodison Park is our castle it's historic walls have been a sanctuary when any news of the city of liverpool meant a mention of the name Anfield.

Restore the old lady, her magic will always remain.
David Price
65   Posted 04/11/2010 at 17:42:37

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I don't think the ground share was to blame for 1860 TSV Munich's demise.
The stadium cost 340m euros. The two teams invested 11m euros each.
The Allianz company paid for it as they were a Munich firm promoting the City.
TSV were always in financial stress, failing the leagues means test to compete and being relegated to division 3 in the 90's.
This was like Bolton sharing with Man Utd.
Footballing terms right now, we are on a par with the RS.
In a 70,000 stadium, what would our turnout be with great views of the pitch?
50,000 perhaps generating £300,000 extra ticket revenue on a current matchday. Add the hospitality boxes and other income and it's another 100k per game.
So £400k extra on each game. £15m extra cash minimum a season.
Yes, it means also them lot get extra cash via the same reasoning.
Why fear them getting further ahead, not exactly spent wisely in the past have they.
Would the Government fund this scheme? or is the Runcorn bridge the end of regenerating this part of the country?
The main concern it seems to the fans is what colour will the seats be.
Who cares, as long they ain't red.
Two options,
if we stay at Goodison then we stand still, at best, in the league.
No money for a new ground so it's ground share for us to move forward.
I'll take my chances going toe to toe with them lot and Moyes having £20 -£30m a season to spend with Hodgson wasting double that.
Robert Daniels
66   Posted 04/11/2010 at 18:29:25

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Not Now, Not Ever... NEVER!!!!!!
Stephen Kenny
67   Posted 04/11/2010 at 18:20:15

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By the majority of english clubs we are seen as a traditional club. One that holds the values of english football close to it. Our ground is seen as historic, atmospheric etc. This is a major marketing tool that could be worth millions is played the right way. Yes the toilets could be bigger and better, yes the concourses could be wider etc. but how much of that really, really matters? With the right money spent we could have the right amount of corporate facilities for a club our size, we could also have conferencing and a hotel if we had the money and we wanted to. There are opportunities all around us, we just need the people that matter to see them.
Larry Boner
68   Posted 04/11/2010 at 18:29:38

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I fucking give up, there is no hope for us, David Price do you write for the Echo ?
I dont want this club to stand still, that is what they have been doing since the Top Balcony was built. somebody on the board needs to step up and say enough is enough, we need to do something.
The greatest opportunity for any club anywhere in the world was the Kings Dock, an iconic stadium in an iconic city in probably the best possible location, these fucking arseholes blew it.
Stop crawling to every yank that appears across the park at Anfield Road and come up with a plan that hits the mark with all Evertonians and then, only then, you will see attendances back to levels they were in the 50s and 60s.
As far as I can see we are in a different league to Liverpool, not literally, while we have the current incumbents making the decisions.
Dave Roberts
69   Posted 04/11/2010 at 19:00:00

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Why don't the club sell 'Supporters Bonds' or 'Honorary Shares' to the fans for £1000? Anybody who could or wanted to pay up front could do so, for those who couldn't ( I suspect that would be most) there could be a premium on the season ticket price over 10 years or so. When it's paid up you get a certificate as a supporter of the Club thanking you for contributing to the renovation of Goodison and your name on a (huge) Bronze plaque at the main entrance and your name on your seat which your family has first option of taking over when you pop-off.

As a big round ball-park figure, £40m could be raised in promisory notes from participating fans against which the club could borrow to begin the redevelopment of Goodison. Board members would be expected in return to make their own sizeable investment and a supporters group could be elected and invited to help oversee the redevelopment process. (And to make sure we're not shafted)

Another system would have to be deployed for non season ticket holders but I am sure one could be devised.

There....sorted! When do we start.
Kevin Tully
70   Posted 04/11/2010 at 19:28:09

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Larry, just where do you think the R.S. will be in 5 years with no C.L. revenues after the likes of Spurs or Man City have replaced them on that gravy train ? Get rid of your inferiority complex, they are no better than us. Just because some Yank thinks he can turn them around, don't you believe the hype.

As for their " worldwide appeal," watch their fanbase dwindle, they only got twenty -odd thousand when they got knocked out of the C.C.

All these glory hunters are exactly what it says on the tin. If they aint winning trophies, they support some fucker who is. Coffee smelt !
Leon Perrin
71   Posted 04/11/2010 at 19:34:35

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David @ 65

Where's the advantage?

On your figures they sell out 70k per home match we sell 50k, why not sort Goodison to 50k capacity and we have all the benefits without looking like the poor relations every week.

Not with you at all on this one.
Al Reddish
72   Posted 04/11/2010 at 19:51:48

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A ground share could be a nightmare but it might just work. The seats could be white and changed each match day by clever lighting, or purple like the wheely bins. We could have one end of the stadium each, with our own identities, ie the DIXIE statue and maybe Ruperts tower our side and they could have a naked blow up Sammy Lee on there's. Also the naming rights would generate huge income, it would be massive.....two top flight clubs sharing for the first time. We would be gauranteed world cup matches there as well. The fact that the shite play there may even bring new fans from outside Liverpool to our ground, they are a much bigger brand than us and people will come just cuz they play there, watch us and fall in love with everything blue (maybe!). I am for it if we are to progres though obviously I would love to have the money to properly develop Goodison.
Karl Jones
73   Posted 04/11/2010 at 20:39:28

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Tell the arrogant bastards to do one. They've been saying that to us for years. I wouldn't go to a shared stadium. We need to keep our own identity. I wouldn't like to think I was sharing my seat with some Norwegian Bandwagon jumper.
Drew O'Neall
74   Posted 04/11/2010 at 19:59:52

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Another pragmatist here.. Apologies if this is repeating earlier points but here are possible answers to some of the "barriers" posted so far by those who can't see it happening?.

Seats (who really gives a shit when you save £200m but anyway):

Yellow or White and both teams choose a yellow/white 2nd kit as they have in previous years.

Or

You put a small section of red seats in one end and a small section of blue seats in the other and the red seats form part of the away allocation on Everton match days and vice versa.

Insignia/Livery on the Stadium front.

Assuming it's to be built in Stanley Park, you have two entrances to the stadium or it's envelope, one to the north with Everton insignia, and one to the south with a big turd.. Sorry... Liverpool insignia. The two entrances would be completely out of view of one another so on match days, as an Evertonian you would be completely oblivious to the other end of the ground because you would have no business being there and it would be used by away supporters to enter the ground.

(Napoli 1-0 up get in!!)

As for those who say we will be the poor cousins and bang on about Liverpool's world wide appeal.. As things stand we have got absolutely no future apart from mediocrity (that's a word that get's bandied around on here a lot) with our financial constraints. Let's take the opportunity to get on a level footing with our misfiring cousins.

Let's show that with a level playing field (no pun intended) that, no, we won't have a half full stadium for league cup games, we'll back our manager with additional finances and we'll get maximum return on our investment, going from strength to strength as a club in the ascendancy .. Also, what makes you think that RS won't continue to fail to fulfil the potential that all their advantages afford them? They've had every opportunity over the last 15 years with additional CL money to spend compared to us and every other team outside the "big four" and look at them - it's pathetic frankly.

Do you honestly think that with the same advantages (a world class stadium) Everton wouldn't make more use of it than the shite? Even if Liverpool sold it out every other week that would just mean that we would have room to grow in to it as others sought to take part locally at more affordable rates. Our fanbase would grow, revenues would increase? Fuck, it?s all positive, stop fixating on the negative and take the bull by the horns Everton!!
Drew O'Neall
75   Posted 04/11/2010 at 20:53:04

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Further more.. those who say we couldn't raise he finances for our half, if we got agreement for this we would have backers lining up to take Everton, in a state of the art stadium from a regular top six team to a regular Champions League team.
James Flynn
76   Posted 04/11/2010 at 21:08:41

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Re-furbish Goodison.

Interesting, Henry's comments. He's expecting the same response from RS supporters as the majority have posted here:

a. Maybe, but how do you make that work, given the animosity?
b. Fuck em

Henry's group did some version of this tap dance in Boston after taking over the U.S. RS. His group received some concessions from the municipality in Boston, then turned the worst dump in American sport into the cash cow it remains.

Don't be surprised he's just politicking and doesn't really want to share anything with his team's #1 rival (In the EPL Derby-sense, we don't have that over here). And speaking practically, he's better off renovating a current structure than investing in a "may be, might be"

I haven't had the opportunity to get to Goodison yet (I will). I say give the Old Girl a needed face lift and let's see which team puts the more attractive side on the pitch.
Tom Hughes
77   Posted 04/11/2010 at 21:59:00

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Drew,
It appears you spoke too soon about LFC. I'd suggest you've done similarly regarding sharing. I realise going the match is probably different for everyone, and I suppose some can divorce themselves from their surroundings and just watch a game of footy, with little or no regard for the backdrop. For me it is the whole package, and I don't believe that can be simulated by a token representative sculpture behind one corner.

Liverpool's turnover (in a stadium only slightly larger than ours) dwarfs ours already. The disparity is vast. There is nothing to suggest that we can hope to fill the size of stadium they need. Therefore we will be expected to half fund the building and maintenance costs of capacity and corporate facilities we may never need. Meanwhile, we could probably add 10-15K nett new seats at GP in manageable phases for far less, preserving that imponderable yet invaluable asset Identity, and at the same time forcing LFC to pay for ALL their new seats.
Dennis Stevens
78   Posted 04/11/2010 at 22:40:26

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If I remember correctly there was talk, a few years ago, of various subsidies from the local authority, the Regional Development Agency & the EU - but I gather that is no longer the case. Had the clubs agreed on a suitable shared stadium with such large financial subsidies then I would have gone along with it, but without them I don't think it's worth it & probably not even possible for Everton to contemplate.
Eugene Ruane
79   Posted 05/11/2010 at 00:43:20

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I started the day saying I'm more for than against.

Having read all the posts, I'm now convinced we should have no part in a shared ground with them.

My mistake was listening to the little rational voice in my head, instead of the little irrational voice that has served me so well over the years.

It won't happen again.
Dennis Stevens
80   Posted 05/11/2010 at 01:24:05

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Indeed, Eugene - so often in life one's first, instinctive reaction is the right one!
Derek Thomas
81   Posted 05/11/2010 at 07:04:37

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The need for a new stadium from a rs point of view is, IMO based on a year after year CL participation. A couple of years none qualification, quite possible and the wheels fall off the business plan good style.

From our point of view;

1) How much will we have to find up front.

2) Can we actually come up with it.

3) If yes, why should we pull them out of the shit, yes a bit petty I know and it is 'in theory' a sensible idea.

Use the cash, if it ever gets out of the ringfence, to do up Goodison one or two steps at a time.

Make a virtue out of necessity. More Archie Lietch-esque.

The Old Lady must be near listed building status now. Accentuate the positives.

'All' that is required is men of vision a la 1892... we're fucked then.

Point: as to toilets, the last major upgrade was, I think, when the around the time of the main stand/top balcony. What was our capacity then? 55k.

Were the planning regs different then i.e. toilets per 100 punters or whatever. So why are we 'short'? Why can't they seem to cope? Or are we just pigs full of beer?

If the toilets per 100 is adequate, is it just a matter of more china, stainless steel and tiles... oh yes, thats 'front of house' orginisation and acumen, so again we revert to a) men of vision, b) we're fucked.
James Peter
82   Posted 05/11/2010 at 09:40:39

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I didn't get a chance to read all of the posts as I'm in work. I would love Goodison to be rebuilt over time as my number 1 preference; however, if the choice was between staying (and not developing) and a groundshare, I would have to go with it.

I believe we are punching above our weight at the moment financially and I would hate to see us slowly demise, with our limited budget streams. I'm not saying sharing guarantees more money or a better squad but it would certainly be a postive step, one which we would be used to keep hold of or attract players.

One major flaw people are quite rightly pointing out is the comparative current financial situations of both clubs. Our squad is very decent at the moment, with some big players; I'm pretty sure once it was confirmed we were getting a groundshare by a certain date, we would immediately attract investors. We would come a lot cheaper than Liverpool, have a better squad and all we would need was much much better world branding!

Great site, lads, haha.

Tony Waring
83   Posted 05/11/2010 at 09:54:53

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A few good ideas have emerged. Dave @ #68 ? why not supporters bonds and don't Barca do something akin to this?

As for Derek #80, if we really could persuade government that GP should be a listed building maybe we could get some cash towards refurbishment ? bit tongue-in-cheek but stranger things happen!

Tom Hughes
84   Posted 05/11/2010 at 09:48:01

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The more I think about this whole story, the more I feel it's slightly ironic (or even mystifying) that the guy who is "supposedly" suggesting this "possibility", is the fella who was instrumental in ensuring that the Red Sox remained at the evergreen though ageing Fenway. It's a complete change of tack, and a journalist's misuse of pragmatism IMO.

For those of you not familiar with this ballpark, Fenway is an ancient structure with many similarities to our older stands. It is considered real "old school", and is one of only a few remaining traditional baseball stadia that bucked the trend on several occasions, and remained in its original location, and greatly unchanged, right amongst the communities that have always filled its stands.

The place is now revered in the US because of its intimacy and atmosphere (all sound familiar?), and is considered a role model for the new retro ballparks. This is in the home of some of the world's most advanced stadia..... yet somehow, despite the antiquated facilities and obstructed views, they still managed to beat the rest to the honours recently (proving brand new doesn't necessarily mean success, no more than old should mean mediocrity or failure). GP, being four-sided can literally have history and modernity combined in a way that no other footy stadium in the world can..... Our individual identity and history would be enhanced, not lost nor diluted.

Of course we could just go for what could be a relatively clinical, featureless new arena that we'll never be able to put our name to with any conviction or warmth. Then there are the other issues connected with trying to rationalise two identities, and two sets of requirements into one stadium. For instance, viewing distances for a 70-75k seater will be far greater than that of a 50-55k one, with reduced intimacy for our smaller crowds.

While GP does have a ridiculous number of obstructions (many can be readily erradicated), it does at least bring everyone very close to the action. Even the top Balcony for all its height is nowhere near as far from the action as say Old Trafford's upper tier, and an unobstructed seat in the upper Bullens is as good a vantage point as anything you'll find at the Emirates.

Therefore, I'd suggest being pragmatic in terms of LFC's perceived requirements, may be far from pragmatic and even potentially seriously detrimental to ours, as I don't believe they equate or align in any way... At the same time, I believe we already have the foundations of something that could be far more exclusive and beneficial. Something that will shout "Everton" from every brick.

Steve Guy
85   Posted 05/11/2010 at 13:10:57

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Everton have only been "open" to a groundshare since Kirkby fell through. Yes, but it's pragmatic you might say; however, I think Kenwright will be crapping himself if this got serious... he couldn't find the £35M for Kings Dock, so where would he find the £200M + a shared one in Stanley Park would cost us?

This would only become feasible for Everton with a new owner capable of underwriting the debt. So, unless the 24/ 7 search uncovers someone soon, don't hold your breath and be prepared for an embarrassing U-Turn from Kenwright when the RS call his bluff.

Nelaj Behajiha
86   Posted 05/11/2010 at 15:11:59

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Why not have two huge stand terraces at each end of the ground like Roma and Lazio? That would make it a really special ground.
Dave Roberts
87   Posted 05/11/2010 at 17:57:54

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Nelaj

I assume you mean standing terraces?

Not allowed I'm afraid....not since the Hillsborough recommendations were implemented following the inquiry.

Standing could be made safe with a bit of imaginative engineering but I think that boat has long since left the dock as an option.
Robert Daniels
88   Posted 05/11/2010 at 21:22:54

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On the theme of redeveloping Goodison, my 9-year-old asked if he could go in the tent as he's never been in there. I explained that you have to come out of the tent and walk round the corner to the entrance in Goodison Road, I also explained that at half-time you can't go back in the tent, to your table, as you can in the other lounges.

I told him about the new development proposed for the car park at the Park End; he said that sounds great, but why not build it on the back of the Park End stand? That way we could go back to a table at half-time.

If a 9-year-old boy can see the sense in altering the Park End stand, by building it on to the existing structure, why cant the board?

Instead of a free-standing building, attach it and take the roof off and run the seats further back, increasing capacity, then fit a new roof.

The new development is apparently costing £10 million, how much more to fit a new roof and say bang in 3000 more seats? This needs to be challenged and looked at now, before our shortsighted board fuck things up again!
Neil Adderley
89   Posted 05/11/2010 at 21:47:10

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On both the very serious pitfalls of a 'groundshare' and the immeasurable positives of a redeveloped Goodison Park, I'd urge all Evertonians to take very close heed of the incisive and informed view of Tom Hughes.

Thanks Tom, keep up the good work!
Mike Allison
90   Posted 05/11/2010 at 23:07:38

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We could get our extra ten thousand building a massive two tier Park End with the corners filled in. As we don't get 50,000 anyway we could then redevelop the Bullens Road and Gwladys Street gradually and still fit 35,000 in every week.

I remember not being against Kirby at one point (I can't believe it myself); now, I never, ever want to leave Goodison, and simply don't believe it can't be redeveloped. I'm no architect or engineer or anything, but I'm convinced it can be done. (I also happen to have been to Fenway, and it was good even before it was done up, it felt like a proper old school baseball stadium.

I went to Enron Field in Houston, and that was proper weird, like a massive mall/aircraft hanger with some astroturf in it.

James Flynn
91   Posted 06/11/2010 at 03:43:18

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Tom (83) - Agreed. Despite the disagreeable knowledge of the American RS buying EPL's RS, you're correct on how they turned a dump into a money printing press.

Goodison doesn't have to, or should, go. Facelift in order, no doubt. Nothing wrong with that. I'm not with the "Share" group at all. No need.

Would't be surprised Henry floated that in the press just to get RS minions used to the idea they're staying in the same stadium. Can't blame him and think EFC should reject the notion also.
Steve Edwards
92   Posted 07/11/2010 at 13:16:24

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Do Evertonians really want to watch their team play in a half empty stadium? I doubt that very much but that is what you would be doing if we ground share. The new stadium would be for at least 60,000 and may hold 80,000. Why do people suddenly think we are going to attract more than 40,000 fans. I do worry that what happened to Munich 1860 could happen to us. It could very well destroy this club and I don't think we should take a gamble.

As far as Liverpool are concerned, they would be in a win-win situation. No gamble for them, they've enough Scandanavians to fill the ground twice over. If we go down the pan, just like Munich 1860 did, we would probably sell our share to them. They have nothing to lose and everything to gain by ground share.

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