Last game at Goodison Park and the first game at the new stadium

by   |   12/05/2024  44 Comments  [Jump to last]

Next season will be our last at our iconic old stadium, and we all know the last game played there next May is going to be full of emotions all round. With that in mind, I think the club ought to approach the Premier League to see if our final home fixture can be against an opposition that has a historical significance to the stadium.

To me, there are 2 clear candidates: Aston Villa, who we have played more than any other club; and Nottingham Forest, who we played against in our first-ever league game at Goodison Park on 3 September 1892 (the first actual game was a friendly vs Bolton Wanderers).

My preference would be for Forest as this is about Goodison Park whereas the early home games against Aston Villa would have been at Anfield. Having Everton vs Nottingham Forest as the first league game at Goodison Park and 133 years later as the last league game there would be a great way to honour the ‘Grand Old Lady’

As for our first game in the new Everton Stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock, this will be a ‘test event’ friendly and as it will go down in the records as our opening game at the new stadium it’s important that Everton do not lose.

Article continues below video content

With that in mind, I think the club should invite CD Everton de Viña del Mar from Chile back for this opening match, having last played them here in 2010. Everton vs Everton is a game that Everton cannot lose!

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Michael Kenrick
1 Posted 12/05/2024 at 22:09:57
We'll have to be quick, John. I think the fixtures are published next month and the Super Computers are probably already working on them.

But then the Premier League are so corrupt, we should be able to bribe them to do whatever we want. Oh, hang on, that would need lotsa money.

Chris McGinn
2 Posted 12/05/2024 at 22:20:33
A second match against CD Everton to open the new stadium would be a great idea.
Dennis Stevens
3 Posted 12/05/2024 at 22:23:14
Great suggestions. I would also suggest we approach the fixture compilers to see if we can play Villa in our first League fixture in our new home – for the same reason you mention them.

I just hope that last home match, if scheduled against Forest, doesn't turn out to be a relegation 6 pointer!

Danny O’Neill
4 Posted 12/05/2024 at 22:24:39
As much as I'm looking forward to the new Everton Stadium, I'm trying not to think about the last game at Goodison. It's going to be too emotional.
Neil Copeland
5 Posted 12/05/2024 at 22:35:12
John, great suggestions.

Danny, with you all the way, I am dreading the final game.

Derek Thomas
6 Posted 12/05/2024 at 01:05:12
When I eventually board that heavenly 500 bus from Western Avenue to the ground, it will arrive (after a short walk) at a dirty red brick ground with 4 tall floodlight pylons, a big blue marble main door and a main stand with a gable, maybe even curved cut-outs behind the goals.

Chips will be 6d... as will programmes, the beer and music will also be excellent.

School of Science, the Golden Vision and Holy Trinity will be well to the fore, Derbies will be won on a regular basis and, on occasion – lost, Sandy OG will still hit the roof of the net...this is Everton after all!

So yes it'll be sad, but as the song says 'Dragons live for ever, not so little boys' and whether you like it or not, you can only go forward.

And we need to, So BMD it is.

Goodison will have its Long Goodbye and then, like we all eventually will - sleep The Big Sleep.

The spirit of Goodison has seeped into the wood, steel and concrete. That spirit though comes from the people and the people will take it with them.

But somewhere down the track, one night under the new lights, we'll put some jumped up gang of sky flavours of the month to the sword and if he's honest – and some are – their manager will reflect ruefully about how "it's always hard to come here when Everton and the crowd are up for it".

Then you'll know.

You never really left!

Stephen Vincent
7 Posted 13/05/2024 at 14:08:22
I am in the process of trying to find a collapsible saw that I can smuggle into The Grand Old Lady so that I can take my Lower Bullens seat with me. If we have no home cup ties and my heart stands up to the pressure of a full 19 games, I will have watched 1,288 competitive matches at Goodison and life without her is unthinkable.

I don't really care who we play on the final day of next season providing it is at home. As to the first game at Bramley-Moore Dock, I'd have a 4-way tournament, us, Vina del Mar, Kharkiv, and the winners of the Gaza Premier League.

Tony Abrahams
8 Posted 13/05/2024 at 14:24:38
It wouldn't surprise me if the league have us playing away on the last day of next season, Stephen, but I remember having one of those camping knives, with all sorts on when I was a child, and it had a little saw on it, mate.

The things you do as kids, me and my mate actually sawed a tree down over three days coming home from school with one of those knives, so I'm sure you will easily be able to get your seat!

Danny O’Neill
9 Posted 13/05/2024 at 14:37:01
Stephen, if you don't manage to get the saw in, we can rip it out and carry it away!

You can sit on it in the Harlech before you carry it home and put it in your bedroom!!

You'll never have to sleep in your bed again.

Brent Stephens
10 Posted 13/05/2024 at 15:30:59
Just had a WhatsApp sent to me — Z-Cars being played at BMD!

Looks as if it's in MP4 format. Anybody know how I can post that on ToffeeWeb?

Colin Metcalfe
11 Posted 13/05/2024 at 15:40:21
My opinion is that we should have a change and drop Z-Cars when moving to the new stadium – and that goes for Grand Old Team which I find embarrassing.

New stadium, new beginnings.

John Shearon
12 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:09:54
The choice of opponents for the last game at Goodison is out of our hands as is the choice, more than likely, for our first opponents at the BMD. Credit where credit is due – Bill Kenwright decided to allow the 2010 match vs. Everton Chile to go ahead after years of lobbying by supporters – will our new owners be as receptive to such requests in the future – I hope so.

As to the identity of the first opponents, there are several candidates. Bayern Rapid & Vienna from our European past, Celtic for the historic cultural, links, and Everton Chile for a celebration of “Everton” - we could also invite representatives of the other Evertons from South America – four in Argentina and one in Uruguay (the six clubs have a combined age of 659 years). The main plus here is that “Everton” are guaranteed a win.

Whoever is chosen for the honour of opening the BMD I hope profit is not the main driver and that some input is sought from our fanbase.

Dennis Stevens
13 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:10:18
Aye, Colin. Time to start some new traditions.
Stephen Vincent
14 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:11:55
Trouble is Danny, I think they might spot us carrying a whole row out. I'm prepared to give it a try if you are.
Dennis Stevens
15 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:12:52
It suddenly struck me that, if 777 are successful in their takeover bid, we may start with a pre-season tournament against other clubs they own.
Rob Halligan
16 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:13:44
This one, Brent?………

Brent Stephens
17 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:15:15
Good man, Rob. I hadn't seen it before today.
Eddie Dunn
18 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:15:56
it doesn't matter who we play.
Whoever it is will become a part of the history.
I am sick of hearing our tired old songs on a tinny tannoy. Time for a new tune, or pay a proper pipes band to play.
Mike Owen
19 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:26:04
Stephen, 7, I also sit in the Lower Bullens but I don't want to take my seat with me. I want the floorboard I've been stomping on for years.

I hope Derek, 6, is right when he says:
"The spirit of Goodison has seeped into the wood, steel and concrete. That spirit though comes from the people and the people will take it with them."

Perhaps I'm too much in love with Goodison, but I have my doubts about whether the atmosphere will be as good at BMD. Certainly need to keep Z Cars.

As for first ever game at BMD, I'd love to see the Chilean Everton. There was a crowd of almost 26,000 for a midweek pre-season when they played at Goodison in 2010, so the interest is there.

As for the last game at Goodison, I think I'd like to see the Tractor Boys. Help me drag that floorboard home.

Mike Owen
20 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:26:04
Stephen, 7, I also sit in the Lower Bullens but I don't want to take my seat with me. I want the floorboard I've been stomping on for years.

I hope Derek, 6, is right when he says:
"The spirit of Goodison has seeped into the wood, steel and concrete. That spirit though comes from the people and the people will take it with them."

Perhaps I'm too much in love with Goodison, but I have my doubts about whether the atmosphere will be as good at BMD. Certainly need to keep Z Cars.

As for first ever game at BMD, I'd love to see the Chilean Everton. There was a crowd of almost 26,000 for a midweek pre-season when they played at Goodison in 2010, so the interest is there.

As for the last game at Goodison, I think I'd like to see the Tractor Boys. Help me drag that floorboard home.

Rob Halligan
21 Posted 13/05/2024 at 16:36:00
I’ve heard that Danny wants the refreshment kiosk in the Upper Bullens where he is constantly refused a drink at half time. If you can’t get it Danny, take a photo and build a replica at home, along with a cardboard cutout of the girl who won’t serve you! 😁😁😁
Stephen Vincent
22 Posted 13/05/2024 at 17:04:18
Mike, that is an excellent call and something I will have to give serious consideration to. I have been stamping on that same floorboard since 1990 I think.

Totally agree about Z Cars, but I wouldn't shed tears if we ditched Grand Old Team.

Mike Keating
23 Posted 13/05/2024 at 17:08:18
Agree with Colin @11
Z Cars was a rubbish theme tune back in 1962 based on a children’s rhyme from the 19 C. With the words of Jonny Todd added it is nothing but a dirge (even Bob Dylan and the Band couldn’t make into a track worth listening to).
I’ve told my family, if they dare to play it at my funeral, I’ll come back and haunt them!
I note that it is shared by Watford and Workington AFC - let them keep it.
We need an anthem to be proud of to match our new stadium and, hopefully, a new era.
Will Mabon
24 Posted 13/05/2024 at 17:08:33
Colin @ 11:

I can perhaps see a case for using Grand Old Team and Forever Everton a little less, they do feel a little dated sometimes.

These are perhaps linked with eras, a fashion of a time, as has become Spirit of the Blues now (although an old song).

Z-Cars however, to me, is the soul, and that's timeless. Change culture has pervaded about everything in recent decades and I'm replete. Take the soul away and you are left with only business.

Z-Cars to open at Bramley-Moore.

Mike Owen
25 Posted 13/05/2024 at 17:31:21
Mike, 23, the Z-Cars tune may not be to your musical taste, but it's locked into the psyche of many of us, having heard it before every home game.

I agree with Will, 24, it's part of the heartbeat of the club. It's been a constant over the last 60 years, good and bad.

In fact, I would suggest it's perhaps even part of the "brand", as perceived by outsiders. For it seems that the MotD producers love to play it in the commentator's introduction to the highlights of our home games.

And there is not a more appropiate place to play Z Cars than a Liverpool dock, bearing in mind it was based on a folk song with the following lyrics:

Johnny Todd, he took a notion
For to cross the ocean wide
And he's left his own true love behind him
Walking by the Liverpool tide

For a week, she wept with sorrow
Tore her hair and wrung her hands
Till she met another handsome sailor
Walking by the Liverpool sands

Dennis Stevens
26 Posted 13/05/2024 at 18:24:47

Danny doesn't need the refreshment kiosk from the Upper Bullens – we just need them to replicate it at the new stadium in the form of a mural. Then Danny can guarantee never to be served!

Danny O’Neill
27 Posted 13/05/2024 at 18:48:45
She never serves me.

I always start a debate, but she just gives me a look in that Scouse female way, so you have to admit defeat and pick your battles!!

Ray Roche
28 Posted 13/05/2024 at 19:59:16
You’re talking shite son. Personally, I’m sick of people coming on here and demanding that we ditch Z Cars or the siren, or whatever! People proffer their own particular crap, maybe because that tune was playing when they lost their cherry, who cares, Z Cars is part of EVERTON! Accept it. The fact that Watford and Shite FC have stolen Z Cars doesn’t make mean that we have to give it up. Z Cars means a lot to people who have been supporting the club for years, why not change our kit as well? I know, let’s play in red and white? That’s the colour successful teams play in…ffs!
Joe McMahon
29 Posted 13/05/2024 at 20:30:14
I want Everton to come out onto the pitch to the 1970s Tom Baker Dr Who era song. Failing that, just the Z Cars Siren only.
Billy Bradshaw
30 Posted 13/05/2024 at 20:51:05
Ray @ 28, with you on that one mate.
Christine Foster
31 Posted 13/05/2024 at 20:53:58
I hope the club sell every seat at a tenner a time to fans, just to take a bit of Goodison to your own back garden. Maybe in the cupboards of the main stand are a few thousand seat cushions too, you know, the one that used to rain down on those below! I guarantee every seat, every cushion would be sold and raise a million.

A square foot of the pitch for the back garden perhaps, me I would look for one of those Llittlewoods clocks! I wonder what happened to them?

Brent Stephens
32 Posted 13/05/2024 at 21:02:14
EFC Shareholders Association in one of their newsletters state that "there is a Premier League cap that sees no more than 80% of capacity being Season Ticket members".

That sounds remarkably low. It would put the Goodison maximum ST numbers at 31,658. So, 7,900 non-ST, of which 3,000 would be away fans. So, 4,900 non-ST home fans. That many?

And I can't see a Premier League rule that sets that 80% maximum. The Premier League Handbook states only that clubs shall R.6.9. promote the availability of tickets by reserving a reasonable proportion (at least 5%) of them for sale to non-season ticket holders.

Anybody with knowledge on this?

Larry O'Hara
33 Posted 13/05/2024 at 21:12:15
I like the siren…
Russell Smith
34 Posted 13/05/2024 at 21:20:11
We have to keep Z-Cars because I can't change my ringtone!!!!!!!!

Just hearing the first few bars always sends a shiver down my back, the joyous expectation, memories of great times recalled, the momentary delay until the first blue clad warrior appears.

Z-Cars is and always will be Everton

Brian Wilkinson
35 Posted 13/05/2024 at 22:55:47
I recall Everton this season having the first home game because our neighbours requested an away fixture, due to the Annie road extension, so I'm assuming Everton should also be able to request to have their final fixture next season, to be a home fuxture.

Like I mentioned in an earlier post a few weeks back, the stadium will be up and running well before our final ever game at Goodison, so with everyone descending on Goodison, it would make sense to open the new stadium for testing for the final match, and show the match on the two big screens at Bramley-Moore Dock, offering those on the season ticket waiting list a chance to test the new ground out and help keep large numbers without tickets away from Goodison.

As for an opening pre-season, how about playing an Everton legends 11, could include Baines and Jagielka, to give them a send off they deserve, plus a chance for fans to see Rodriguez and others which covid denied us seeing.

Will Mabon
36 Posted 13/05/2024 at 23:47:24

Keenair at Liverpool Airport have a goal frame from Goodison outside their entrance door. Now that's a souvenir. I forget the vintage, early '90s I think.

Not many of those available, but I too would love a cushion/missile, or anything else.

Eric Myles
37 Posted 14/05/2024 at 02:01:42
Christine #31, if I recall correctly I think one of them got destroyed and the other is in a fan's back garden.

Said fan having posted as much on these pages some years ago. Don't recall his name though.

Christine Foster
38 Posted 14/05/2024 at 03:28:56

I think I will have to settle for one of those imitation copies you put on a desk.

Danny O’Neill
39 Posted 14/05/2024 at 06:13:45
Ray, the only one I am not keen on is Grand Old Team. It was originally Celtic, is used by Hibs and Tottenham as well as Everton. But I appreciate a lot of supporters like it isn't going anywhere.

I think judge Russell has set the final verdict on Z-Cars with his ringtone evidence!!

Brian, I think that is a great idea. Open up the new stadium and put the match on a big screen. They have to test it a few times and that would be an opportunity.

I've said before when I got taken around the Tottenham stadium, they explained they were playing an U21s match with 20,000 present as a test before the grand opening. There's another idea.

Ray Roche
40 Posted 14/05/2024 at 07:31:16
Danny, I think that the club will play several games, pre-season, exhibition matches etc, to get the players and stewards, caterers and police, used to the surroundings. Parking and transport will also need a dry run before the first game.

And we want to see how Z-Cars sounds!

Danny O’Neill
41 Posted 14/05/2024 at 08:12:26
Yes Ray, it will need to happen.

As well as the U21s, I wonder if we could conduct our pre-season at the Everton stadium? Host a tournament maybe?

Laurie Hartley
42 Posted 14/05/2024 at 12:17:18
Route for a march - “down to the River Mersey”


Jim Bennings
43 Posted 15/05/2024 at 06:40:02
I know we need to leave Goodison Park, of course we do, but I'm just worried now that it's not all 20 years too late.

I do have this lingering thought that we are just going to become another Sunderland or Middlesbrough, moving over to a new stadium, but nothing changes at the football club.

Danny O’Neill
44 Posted 15/05/2024 at 06:50:02
Jim, stop it. I get watery eyes in the mornings as it is. Don't turn them into floods with the thought of leaving Goodison.

I don't think we'll end up being a Sunderland or Middlesborough.

Firstly we are much bigger than them and have far greater potential once we realise it.

Secondly, those clubs built those stadiums in an era when they all looked the same with different coloured seats. Sunderland, Middlesborough, Southampton, even Leicester.

The Everton Stadium at Bramley Moore Dock looks special even though it isn't finished yet. She's going to be iconic.

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