2,000 fans to be allowed back under new Tier 2 designation

Thursday, 26 November, 2020 69comments  |  Jump to last

With Liverpool Region being placed in the new Tier 2 for coronavirus infection rate by the Government, Everton will be allowed to bring fans back into Goodison Park for the first time since March.

The announcement means that up to 2,000 supporters will be permitted into Goodison Park for Everton's match against Chelsea on 12 December but Burnley's designation as Tier 3 means the Blues' game at Turf Moor will be played behind closed doors.

Back in September, the club sent out an email to season ticket holders regarding a "fair and equitable" ballot system that will be in place when spectators are allowed back into Goodison.

That system is ready to be moulded to whatever capacity Everton are told they will be permitted, with the club understood to be working towards getting as many fans into the stadium as they are allowed by safety regulations.  

Reader Comments (69)

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Rob Halligan
1 Posted 26/11/2020 at 12:40:05
And so the fun begins! Will it be a ballot that once you've been selected for a particular game, you have to wait until you can go back into the draw, or are you back in the draw for the next game?

There is a minimum 16 games left for us, so that should mean everyone (i.e season ticket holders) would only get to see one game this season, unless the restrictions are upgraded to Tier 1.

Andrew Ellams
2 Posted 26/11/2020 at 12:58:16
I guess this will only apply mainly to folks who live on Merseyside. Travelling from Wales is still out except for work. Lancashire is a Tier 3 area so anybody who lives there is out for now.

Still a lot more than 2,000 who will want to go though.

Rob Halligan
3 Posted 26/11/2020 at 13:16:40
Yep, you're right, Andrew. I wasn't thinking properly.

I don't know how many season ticket holders we have in the Liverpool area, but out of about 32k season ticket holders, we might only get about 10 - 15k who can or are willing to opt to enter the ballot for every game, given age, unwilling to chance it, etc.

There are also fans who are season ticket holders in London who will be eligible to enter, but will they be able to travel? Highly unlikely, as it won't be classed as necessary travel.

It just means the RS will be fucked though, as do they have 2k local season ticket holders?

Brian Wilkinson
4 Posted 26/11/2020 at 14:19:25
Quite a lot of season ticket holders, will be around the Country who will not be able to attend, so I have a suggestion.

Ones living local will be allowed to attend, so with so few numbers allowed in the ground, why not offer the option to local schools to attend?

Instead of charging, give these school kids a little bit of something back. Crazy thought, I know, especially with fans wanting to be back, you could have either a parent, or teachers putting something into place.

I do not have the answer about the kids getting to and from the ground, but if a plan could be put into place, why not?

Brian Williams
5 Posted 26/11/2020 at 14:32:29
The total allowed to attend is 2k. The ballot will have way, way more than 2k eligible season ticket holders and I can easily see each and every home game being oversubscribed for the ballot by those, so I couldn't see any room for school kids or whoever else.

Paul Hewitt
6 Posted 26/11/2020 at 14:45:25
Only 2,000. Pointless.
Bobby Mallon
7 Posted 26/11/2020 at 14:50:36
To be honest, why would you want to go and watch a game at the ground with only 2,000 there? They can't all sit together... it would rubbish IMO.
Mal van Schaick
8 Posted 26/11/2020 at 15:32:15
Like League Two in its pomp.
Alan J Thompson
9 Posted 26/11/2020 at 16:04:51
Wouldn't surprise me if Peter Mills got more up that cul-de-sac.
Patrick McFarlane
10 Posted 26/11/2020 at 16:11:32
Well the applications for entry to the ballot may be affected by the latest round of TV games in which Everton will feature, with so many evening kick-offs:

Saturday 5 December
12:30 Burnley v Everton (BT Sport)

Saturday 12 December
20:00 Everton v Chelsea (BT Sport)

Wednesday 16 December
18:00 Leicester City v Everton (Amazon Prime Video)

Saturday 19 December
17:30 Everton v Arsenal (Sky Sports)

Saturday 26 December
20:00 Sheffield Utd v Everton (BT Sport)

Monday 28 December
20:00 Everton v Man City (Amazon Prime Video)

Tony Cunningham
11 Posted 26/11/2020 at 16:14:18
Brian WIlkinson,

I imagine quite a few season ticket holders will want to go and not enough space for school kids. I'd imagine the opposite that, even by the end of the season (at this rate), many fans will only have seen 1 or 2 games.

Patrick McFarlane
12 Posted 26/11/2020 at 16:35:01
The home cup game with United on 23rd December is also scheduled for live coverage on Sky at 8pm
Will Mabon
13 Posted 26/11/2020 at 16:38:42
Paul, Bobby,

Notwithstanding my opinion about this whole thing, should sport and football get back to normal, I'd rather wait 'til full stadium attendance is possible, personally. What a strange experience it would be with 2,000 there.

Stephen Meighan
14 Posted 26/11/2020 at 17:02:17
I can remember attending games at Goodison Park in the Simod Cup ZDS Cup, Full Members Cup in the late '80s and early '90s when we were getting attendances of about 6,000 or 7,000. It wasn't a pleasant experience so I can't even imagine what it's going to be like with 2,000.

Not for me. Maybe when we can get about 20,000 or 25,000, so there will be some kind of atmosphere.

Danny O’Neill
15 Posted 26/11/2020 at 17:28:30
Torn on this one.

The glass half full in me is glad we are starting on the road to getting back to normal.

The negative side of would rather go for all or nothing.

I guess baby steps and gradual / phased return to normal is how it's going to be regardless of what I think.

Colin Malone
16 Posted 26/11/2020 at 17:33:03
Paul #6.

Totally agree. Waste of time, all or nothing.

Brian Williams
17 Posted 26/11/2020 at 17:39:19
Danny, it'll certainly be a surreal occasion for those of us that "win" a place in the ballot. I'm just trying to imagine myself in my seat with hardly anyone around.

Can't help wondering too how much hassle it'll be for the club with regard to staffing, security etc. Strange times for sure.

Rob Halligan
18 Posted 26/11/2020 at 17:48:08
Brian, will it be your own seat though? I think only certain parts of the stadium will be open, so anyone lucky enough to be drawn out will probably be sent a ticket by the club.
Brian Williams
19 Posted 26/11/2020 at 18:37:33
Rob, good point. Didn't think of that though it would make good sense to do it that way. Could see it being the main stand only.
Peter Mills
20 Posted 26/11/2020 at 18:56:08
There’ll be a few of us on here who’ve been at Goodison as part of an 8,000 attendance, not much difference.
Brian Wilkinson
21 Posted 26/11/2020 at 19:01:09
What I was suggesting was instead of the 2,000 going to season ticket holders, donate the allocation to local schools and the Everton in the Community for mental health issues etc.

It would solve short term the balloting and give a chance to the kids who have still had to attend school, but then had no social life outdoors, if it is safe to attend school, then bring in a system short term to get some of the younger supporters onboard, might only be a couple of games, once the numbers able to attend go up, then look towards season ticket holders.

I know season ticket holders want to be back, we all do, but a little sacrifice for a couple of games, could have at least give those school kids a chance to attend a game.

Jack Convery
23 Posted 26/11/2020 at 19:47:35
Let 2000 who have been at the forefront of this pandemic have these tickets - they above all deserve them.

Off topic I know but how on earth can these Xmas games turnaround times be justified. I see the RS and MU do best - I wonder why.

Team Turnaround time*
Chelsea 48:00
Everton 48:00
Crystal Palace 48:00
Man City 48:00
Wolves 48:45
Leicester 50:30
Aston Villa 50:30
West Brom 51:30
West Ham 51:45
Brighton 51:45
Burnley 54:00
Leeds 54:00
Sheffield United 70:00
Tottenham 70:45
Arsenal 72:30
Southampton 75:00
Liverpool 75:30
Man Utd 79:30
Newcastle 96:00
Fulham 99:00
*Time in hours and minutes between kick-offs

Manchester City, Chelsea, Everton and Crystal Palace have the shortest recovery times to contend with, as all four clubs face two matches in 48 hours. Wolves have an extra 45 minutes.

The fixture schedule has, however, been kind to Fulham and Newcastle in particular, with both Scott Parker and Steve Bruce's sides having 99 and 96 hours recovery respectively.

Manchester United, Liverpool, Southampton and Arsenal all also have more than three days between their two games.

Paul Ferry
24 Posted 26/11/2020 at 19:50:06
While on the one hand a draw in which all season-ticket holders can participate seems fair, on the other the club know who their most loyal fans are – they invited them to Finch Farm.

Every one who was invited to Finch Farm for that occasion ought to be allowed to attend every home game with a Covid attendance ceiling.

If memory serves, there will still be seats available (was it around 1,000 who were invited to Finch Farm, or less?)

Our most loyal blues deserve precedence.

Tony Abrahams
25 Posted 26/11/2020 at 19:52:05
I thought they could have let a few thousand kids in right from the start Brian, especially because they were all sitting in classrooms next to each other, so I wouldn’t complain if this happened now.

Loads of people live for the match though, and I’ve seen quite a few lost souls wandering around since they also shut the pubs again, so maybe it’s better for these people to get into the game again first, and let them get a semblance of happiness back into their lives.

Patrick McFarlane
26 Posted 26/11/2020 at 19:52:42
Jack #23

The simple answer to your question is that Herr Klopp and OGS ensured they cried and moaned about any possibility of having congested fixtures for their clubs, and is supposedly the reason why the release of the TV schedule was delayed. The last few years has seen Man City and Everton have the least rest time between games – I wonder what the reason for this is?

Tony Abrahams
28 Posted 26/11/2020 at 20:05:12
This is something that we should be screaming about imo, because surely every team should get at least 72 hours rest between games, and not just certain clubs, because they have moaning bastard managers.
John Raftery
29 Posted 26/11/2020 at 23:39:57
Paul (24) You have my vote! I have a vested interest of course. There were only a few hundred at the Finch Farm event although I think around a thousand qualified.

From what I read, most clubs are planning to use a ballot system for season ticket holders to opt in. I would expect that, once fans are permitted to travel to away games, probably not until next season, the club will use the well-established criteria for determining eligibility, ie, previous away matches attended.

One obvious operational reason for restricting the 2,000 allocation to season ticket holders, whose contact details are known to the clubs, is to enable tracking and tracing to operate effectively.

John Raftery
30 Posted 26/11/2020 at 23:52:20
Peter (20),

I think the lowest gate for a home first-team match was versus Millwall in the Simod Cup in December 1988. I was one of the 3,703. We won 2-0. For the semi-final against QPR and a trip to Wembley at stake, a crowd of 7,072 dragged themselves to Goodison.

Rob Halligan
31 Posted 27/11/2020 at 09:14:50
John # 29. Like you, I have a vested interest in Paul's idea, something which I suggested a few weeks back, in a totally selfish way of course, and was shot down for the idea! If memory serves me correctly, about 450 attended the event at Finch Farm.

I'm sure the club have thought about giving priority to all those who attended all games prior to the first lockdown, but, as seems fair, every season ticket holder should be given the opportunity to attend future matches until full capacity is granted.

Mick Conalty
32 Posted 27/11/2020 at 09:42:04
As there will be hardly anyone in the ground, will I be able to walk my dog around the pitch? Like I do when I am watching a game in the park on Sundays.
Patrick McFarlane
33 Posted 27/11/2020 at 09:53:46
For those of us who may not see a game at Goodison for a wee while, finding Everton related stuff to fill the void is paramount. In that view, I have just ordered David Prentice's 'Grand Old Team' and because it's 'Black Friday' I managed to get a 60% discount so it only cost £5.99 rather than £14.99 from reachsportshop.com.

You have to register as a customer – but, for all the tight-wads like me, it's worth it. This is not an advertisement, btw; I thought it would be remiss of me not to share with fellow TWers.

Tony Abrahams
34 Posted 27/11/2020 at 09:55:50
Good suggestion, Paul F, and again this would get no complaints from me. But, it could be argued that getting tickets for away games has been a closed shop for years, and there are probably loads of loyal Evertonians, who would like to attend every game, but haven't got the credits to do so?

On the other hand, there will be loads of people with the credits, who don't always go to the game, and there are also ways to do this.

Hopefully 2,000 soon becomes 13,000, or even more, but I've already promised any tickets I can get to my little godson!

Brian Wilkinson
35 Posted 27/11/2020 at 16:43:29
Only consolation, those greedy gets who sell on StubHub for inflated prices and also ticket touts who sell concert tickets have been hit hard.
Patrick McFarlane
36 Posted 27/11/2020 at 17:28:51
Possibly not the correct place to post this article from the Guardian, but it could have long-term significance for Everton FC if Alexei Navalny gets the response from the authorities that he seeks.

“There is no sense to sanction colonels or generals or people who are definitely not travelling a lot or have bank accounts in Europe,” he said, speaking in English. Navalny singled out the billionaire metals magnate and former Arsenal shareholder Alisher Usmanov, and said “no one in the Kremlin will treat European sanctions seriously” as long as Usmanov could moor his yacht in Barcelona or Monaco. He said sanctions against oligarchs such as Usmanov and Abramovich would be welcomed by 99% of Russians.

“Just target Russian oligarchs. Just tell Mr Usmanov, Mr Abramovich … ‘Guys, you are acting against Russian people, you are acting against Europe, you are all of the time advocating that Europe is something bad. So please, take your yachts and get them somewhere to the nice harbours of Belarus Republic.”

Call for EU sanctions against Oligarchs

Kieran Kinsella
37 Posted 27/11/2020 at 17:35:12
We need to pick the 2,000 carefully to get a boost. We don't want 2,000 nervous nellies biting their fingernails quietly or staying home if it rains.

They should do auditions. First a singing test, then expose them to extreme cold and heat, make them watch videos of the 97/98 season as part of a stress test to see if they are psychologically strong.

Darren Hind
38 Posted 27/11/2020 at 18:22:59
I've heard that, in order to keep the required distance, it is the seat itself which will be drawn out. If you are lucky enough for them to draw your usual seat, you are in.
Rob Halligan
39 Posted 27/11/2020 at 18:31:27
Darren, highly unlikely, but what happens if the seat next to you is also drawn out? I still think it will be anyone selected will be issued with a ticket in a designated stand, as I don't think the whole stadium will be open.
Darren Hind
40 Posted 27/11/2020 at 18:40:43

I don't know how much substance there is to it. Could be the usual shite, but I heard they would bracket seats so your neighbours are a few seats behind, in front and either side. Then they would select a different bracket the next time.

Must admit, Rob, your idea makes far more sense. Much easier and cheaper to open one 1-2 stands

Rob Halligan
41 Posted 27/11/2020 at 18:42:25
Here's what the RS are planning to do, and I feel we will do something similar.

Supporters will all be seated in the main stand, and the ballot will only be open to fans who live in the Liverpool City Region - an area that covers the boroughs of Liverpool, Halton, Knowsley, Sefton, St Helens and Wirral. Applicants must be season-ticket holders or members with at least 19 credits from the 2018-19 Premier League campaign.

Darren Hind
42 Posted 27/11/2020 at 18:46:13
Fucken 'ell, Rob – they would never find enough "local" kopites to fill 2,000 seats.
James Head
43 Posted 27/11/2020 at 18:47:09
Apparently Norwegian Big Stand FC across the park are struggling to get any fans to attend their home games as so few live in any of the local boroughs!
Patrick McFarlane
44 Posted 27/11/2020 at 18:48:32
Darren #42,

There'll only be about 10 seats available as the media circus will take up the other 1,990 seats.

Rob Halligan
45 Posted 27/11/2020 at 18:49:59
I know, Darren. It's hilarious!! I've heard there has so far been just 23 applicants who are eligible for a ticket.
Robert Workman
46 Posted 27/11/2020 at 19:19:27
I don't think it is fair that some teams have fans in their ground, while others do not. Having said that, 2,000 fans are hardly going to make much of a difference.
Brian Williams
47 Posted 27/11/2020 at 19:42:05
Seemingly Gunnar Olsen, of Scottie Road, vehemently denies the myth of the majority of the shite's supporters being from overseas on the Echo website.
Dave Abrahams
48 Posted 27/11/2020 at 20:07:11
I will not be taking part in the ballot for tickets. Although I would love to get back to watching the Blues, I couldn't honestly go to the game and possibly infect my wife with the virus when I got home.

I would like to suggest that a fair percentage of disabled fans are included in the ballot, maybe even a bigger proportion than those of us more fortunate. I am particularly thinking of a dedicated fan who lives next door to me. Him and his carer, his mother, never miss a game, home and away, and it's true to say that Everton are a massive part of his life. He is missing that big part of his life much more than the majority of us would.

Brian Wilkinson
49 Posted 28/11/2020 at 22:26:08
After the last 5 games, I pity the poor souls who get drawn out of the ballot.
Patrick McFarlane
50 Posted 02/12/2020 at 15:51:58
According to a variety of outlets including the Financial Times, the clubs are presented with very different issues when it comes to allocating the limited number of tickets available to their supporters.

On Merseyside, for example, Liverpool FC have some 5,832 season ticket holders who reside in the Liverpool postcode area, whilst Everton have some 25,647 season ticket holders, who reside in the Liverpool postcode.

So those TW observers were correct in their conclusions: those flags and pictures of all things in red around town really are for the tourists.

Brian Williams
51 Posted 02/12/2020 at 15:56:45
Patrick #50.

Is that true? 5,832?

Patrick McFarlane
52 Posted 02/12/2020 at 16:01:03
That's what it says:

Twitter Account

I haven't seen the article myself, Brian, but I've no reason to doubt it's the truth... else a numerical error has been compounded by repetition.

Brian Williams
53 Posted 02/12/2020 at 16:07:09
I hope it is true, mate, because that's priceless ammunition against the kopites if I'm unlucky enough to get into a discussion with one.

Gotta be a windup though, surely! Lol.

Rob Halligan
54 Posted 02/12/2020 at 16:14:10
Brian, John. I was actually told a few years back that they only had about 5k season ticket holders with a Liverpool postcode. At the time, I thought it can't be true, but looks like it is.

When you think about it, the number of fans they have who travel from all over the country, as well as other countries, is huge. Whenever they play at home, Priory Road (where away coaches park) is ram packed full of theirs. They even have to park on Utting Avenue and Pinehurst Avenue, basically anywhere they can find a parking space. God knows how many cars come into the city when they play at home... and as for the trains!!!!

Don't forget, Brian, always remind them about the first fans to sing that song. Man Utd fans were the first to sing it following the Munich air disaster, when a group of them went to Old Trafford to lay wreaths etc, and sung YNWA!!

Patrick McFarlane
55 Posted 02/12/2020 at 16:19:57
The Twitterati are having great fun with this replying with stuff like 'we took more scousers to Lille than that' etc. :)

Seriously, it does show that the game has lost its roots to a huge degree, and it also explains the media's take on football in this city of ours.

Rob Halligan
56 Posted 02/12/2020 at 16:27:34
Liverpool's capacity is 53,394, and they have 27K season ticket holders. So one in every two seats is sold on a match per match basis, or as part of a package. Don't forget, it costs a lot more to buy a ticket for a single match.

It's why their season ticket waiting list is so high, when only 50% of their capacity is taken up by season ticket holders.

Tony Abrahams
57 Posted 02/12/2020 at 17:22:26
So it looks like Liverpool FC invented the “rule of six” for their own scouse fans, Rob!
Patrick McFarlane
58 Posted 02/12/2020 at 17:50:43
The ballot for the Chelsea game will open on Wednesday 2 December at 5pm and close on Friday 4 December at 12am (midnight). Remember this is an opt-in ballot! Below are details from the club website:

In keeping with Public Health guidance and the Tier system in operation across the country, I can confirm the ballot process will be restricted to fans who live in the Liverpool City Region.

A minimum of 91% of the 2,000 fans back with us for the clash with Chelsea are guaranteed to be Season Ticket Members. That percentage will be one of the highest, if not the highest, of any club in the Premier League.

To provide the very safest environment for every fan attending the game – and to support the city's ongoing mission to defeat COVID-19 – we feel it is only right that we ask everybody fortunate enough to secure a ticket through the ballot process to utilise the mass-testing centres across the city in the 36 hours prior to returning to Goodison for the Chelsea match.

Coupled with temperature checks on entry, social distancing, the wearing of masks and regular sanitising of hands, it makes for a thorough plan aimed at maintaining the city's downward trajectory in relation to COVID-19 infections.

Brian Williams
59 Posted 02/12/2020 at 17:52:55
Proof of negative Covid test result on the day of the game or day prior to game required to attend!
John Pierce
60 Posted 02/12/2020 at 18:06:36
Will there be concessions? Will any of the usual match-day activities be open?

Is there a point if you can't do any of those things? Can see a fella holding a molten pie in one hand and a Chang in the other shouting at some fella he's never met from one end of the park end to the other, "These are shite!"

At least we'll be able to hear every comment from the erstwhile lucky 2,000 on TV.

"James lad, Turn!!!"

Brian Williams
61 Posted 02/12/2020 at 18:14:52
"Is there a point if you can't do any of those things?" 

Errr... how about being able to watch the game, from inside Goodison?

Rob Halligan
62 Posted 02/12/2020 at 18:16:51
The Gwladys Street stand, I assume the lower tier, and the top balcony to be used. Also designated disability areas.

The club doesn't say if you are successful for the Chelsea game, then you must wait until your turn comes around again, so that every season ticket holder is given the opportunity to attend a game... Or are you entitled to enter the ballot for the next home game?

Patrick McFarlane
63 Posted 02/12/2020 at 18:20:49
Rob, I assume you can enter each and every ballot, regardless if you are picked or not.

Each match will count as a separate ballot application in this process. Each ballot must be entered separately to ensure that the limited number of tickets available are allocated to fans who are actually willing and able to attend each relevant match. It is strongly advised that supporters enter the ballot for as many games as possible to maximise their chances of attending. 

Brian Williams
64 Posted 02/12/2020 at 18:35:34
Anybody know where you can get tested on matchday or the day before and get your result on the same day?
Rob Halligan
65 Posted 02/12/2020 at 18:44:26
Brian, where do you live? Hope university do tests and you get the result within 30 minutes. I can walk there in 10 minutes. You can also go online and find your nearest test centre.
Brian Williams
66 Posted 02/12/2020 at 19:07:30
On the Wirral, Rob.
Rob Halligan
67 Posted 02/12/2020 at 19:37:16
Ah well, can't help you then!! 😁😁
Brian Williams
68 Posted 02/12/2020 at 19:44:43
As far as I've been able to find out, Rob, you have to have symptoms in order to get tested, unless that's different for different sites?
Rob Halligan
69 Posted 02/12/2020 at 19:49:28
That's not correct, Brian. Me and the missus have been a couple of times, we have not been showing signs of symptoms and have tested negative. You can just drop in and do it, and the result is sent to you via a text.
Brian Williams
70 Posted 02/12/2020 at 19:55:00
Sounds good to me Rob, thanks mate.
Ernie Baywood
71 Posted 02/12/2020 at 21:08:15
That twitter post looks fake. I've also seen a screenshot of a bbc article saying similar but no trace online of the actual article.

As much as we'd like to believe it, I suspect it's fake. But a very clever fake.

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