FSG decide on new stadium – Report

on 17.01.2012

Liverpool’s owners Fenway Sports Group (FSG) have decided to go ahead with plans to build a new stadium in Stanley Park, according to a report in The Telegraph.

Above: AFL’s revised design from 2008.

The report, by former Liverpool Echo reporter Chris Bascombe, claims plans from architects AFL will now be modernised and put in place, with the plans by Dallas firm HKS which former owner Tom Hicks had put in place being shelved.

It has been widely reported that principal owner John Henry’s preferred option was to remain at Anfield and redevelop the historic stadium in a similar manner as they did with the Boston Red Sox’s historic Fenway Park.

But planning constraints and the associated costs have been a huge stumbling back, Bascombe explains;

Since buying the club, John W Henry has worked through a variety of options to establish how to solve Liverpool’s enduring stadium problem.

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Henry originally wanted to redevelop Anfield, but after a year of toil working through the planning issues, and the cost of buying nearby residential properties, it was accepted this was not feasible.

FSG has also explored whether to commission new stadium plans, but the time and cost restraint also made that a non-starter.

As Liverpool already have planning permission from both AFL and HKS, the AFK plans will now be used to avoid pushing the process back up to another three years if new planning permission was sought for new plans.

AFL revised proposals for new stadium was presented to Liverpool Football Club early January 2008, for which the capacity is 72,000 with 18,500 seated in the new single tier Kop.

It is now expected that once a naming right’s partner has been found the club will announce their decision to move to Stanley Park.

Hopefully it is these revised plans from 2008 that will now be used, rather than the original 2003 plans which drew large criticism from supporters for it’s lack of originality and was nicknamed ‘The Parry Bowl’ after former chief executive Rick Parry.

This is AFL’s original design from 2003.

More images of the 2008 design:

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  1. Who’s idea was it to let Manur architects anywhere near our stadium. Has JH lost the plot?  Well never hear the end of it.  I can just hear the Manure, Liverpool Syadium designed and built in Manchester. We’ll be a laughing stock when the Bluenoses get hold of this.

  2. Bascombe is clearly saying it’s the 2003 plans with some updating. I fear the costs of the more striking proposals remain too great an obstacle.

    If so we’re in for a fairly generic new home sadly.

      • I think the 2008 version was at the same time as the hks plan and was for 72500 capacity. the costs of steel, glass etc for these larger, more aesthetically pleasing stadiums were prohibitive and therefore abandoned. that’s my recollection anyway.

        Bascombe is referring to 60000 seater so sounds like a facelift for 2003 design.

        • Also the article refers to planning permission granted in 2004 so alterations must be relatively minor / cosmetic for that to remain effective. The St(anley) Mary’s stadium

  3. I’ve got mixed emotions as I understand that to compete financially we have to build more seats. But the idea of leaving Anfield breaks my heart.

    One suggestion I would have is that the designers add more brick to the outside of the stadium as a nod to Anfield. Just my two cents mind you.

  4. 72000 !!!!! thats what we need, like it! that means it ll be easier to get tickets.. and for those who waited all those years to get a season ticket, then they will get a few thousand

    • I was once in the KOP with 28,000 others-now that was some crowd!However I have agree that 18500 seated soumds great!

      • me too more than once, games against Leeds and Everton often saw an over full Kop, especially when the doors opened early and the kids used to sneak in to watch the last 10 minutes.

      • i to was in the kop in them days like no other chanting and singing when 28000 kopits sing they should no 1 in the charts but yes 18500 seats would still be good but will say this my heart will be cut in half if we got to say goodbye to anfield a sad day for liverpool and the world .

  5. It should be just as important to make sure that there is more space to expand even further if we need to. Theres no point building this 60000 seater if they find out the demand is still higher than that. Hopefully the local area should have the expansion ability to go beyond 90000 should that capacity be needed in the future

    • I hate to think that the owners might not have thought of this. If and it’s a big if, they really are going to build a 60k stadium then that would be depressing, signalling that LFC is now thinking of rivalling Arsenal, not MU or MC. What happens when Chelsea moves and they have a 70k seater stadium?? Let it please be for the 72.5k with room for expansion to 80 or 85k. I really can’t see the point in spending so much money for such a small increase of 15k seats!! I hope that Bascombe has it wrong [as usual] and it is the larger stadium LFC have in mind.

  6. It will be the best news to come out of FSG if true, Anfield is old out dated, a new stadium will be a new great chapter in a club with a Great history that is second to none, and club and supporters alike will benefit from this,,for starters for fans Greater ticket options Greater season ticket aplication cahance…need i go on ! i say fairwell Anfield thank you for a wondeful history, Welcome new stadium heres to the future. 

  7. Its not leaving anfield that hurts. Its knowing that it will be demolished. This is the saddest story ive ever read. Id kill to get my hands on a seat from anfield when the club start auctioning parts of the stadium. Similar to the way highbury left.

  8. Its not leaving anfield that hurts. Its knowing that it will be demolished. This is the saddest story ive ever read. Id kill to get my hands on a seat from anfield when the club start auctioning parts of the stadium. Similar to the way highbury left.

  9. This is trhe best news I have heard in ages , Yes I understand the historics of Anfield and the original appeal of the KOP off course I do but if that were a viable option I would have selected it as my first option every time, but to spend all that money for only ten thousand or so extra seats hardly seems worth it when compared financially to the costing to get it done.

    This way with a naming rights partner for the stadium and the KOP to keep it’s original name would be very beneficial if this club does not want to fall further behind the competition. I think this will usher in a new era of golden times for Reds fans globally as it will create an awesome appeal to the top quality players, whilst I get that the players will come for the legend of the club but reality bites as the potential to win silverware is waning with every season that passes.
    I also honestly feel Kenny needs to step aside also as our home form has been woeful having scored less goals than bottom placed Bolton. THIS IS without doubt DISGRACEFUL for a club of this stature. I would love to see Kenny blood more kids, The Sterlings the Susos of this world need a chance rather than spending millions on Downing and Henderson, Spearing is much better and much more influential the Henderson and he cost us nothing, we have Adam Morgan who is banging in goals for fun at Reserve level but will never develop whilst we continually play a very wasteful Kuyt and Carroll, wake up Kenny play the kids , do not waste any more funds on the likes of Defoe or Bent.

      • Having watched the lad on numerous occassions, he is not remotely good enough for the first team.

        Am right behind blooding Sterling, Suso, Wisdom, Dunn and the like though

  10. The original design already looks dated and they’re only 10 years old. Very disappointing news if true. Even the more recent designs from afl the kop is dwarfed by the other 3 stands. Out of touch if you ask me. Even if it takes a couple of years for new planning permission I’d go for a new design, I’m sure to be unqiue it dosnt mean expensive

  11. hopefully we can create an atmosphere there, i was at the Stoke game lately and the singing and atmosphere came all from their fans, it was embarrassing, they were even mocking us for not creating the atmosphere. what has happened us? have we lost our voices?

  12. When it’s built and brand new it will be big, flash and futuristic. In twenty years time it will be uncharacteristic bowl and we’ll all be staying what if

    • I disagree look at the likes of Wembley and the emirates. Those stadiums are amazing. Only good can come from this

  13. Why can football satdium architects only cone up with this same friggen design these days days, just looks far too similar to Wembley, Etihad (Man City) and Emirates (Arsenal) to me! And they have the cheek to slap a KOP sticker in the back window of the goal stand… How’s it the kop when its EXACTLY the same as the other goal stand and its even the same bloody stand all the way through the stadium lmao!

  14. At Liverpool, we don’t settle for second best. Looks like we are going to have a stadium to match that comment.

  15. massivly need this stadium as we lose a lot of money compared to united and arsenal due to ticket sales as anfield does not support enough spaces i would say though build more seats as they will sell out every time lfc play take it up to 100k seating but great news

  16. The ”KOP” stand was bricks and mortar, but the ”atmosphere” was created by the people in it. So as long as they allow a singing section(preferably the entire stand), then so be it. The problem the Arsenal had with the Emirates was not the spanking new stadium, its the support, Highbury was quieter than a convent on match-days. Everybody knows that Anfield is the loudest stadium in England, Liverpool have the most imaginative fans in England. They provide humour and originality. Okay the increasing the stadium is a must, but a big stadium does not mean there will be an atmosphere. Look at Old Trafford, most of the time all you can hear is ”We hate Liverpool” and munching and prawns.

  17. i think the announcement that Liverpool will re-locate to a new stadium will break the hearts of all LFC fans as the history and heitage of Anfield cannot be understated. However, in this day and age, we need a bigger stadium to bring in more revenue so we can fight for more titles. whether it be 75,000 or 90,000 seater, as LFC, we will fill the ground every week….YNWA

  18. I agree, part of the original Anfield must be put in place at the new stadium. In this ‘Brave New World’ we live in, sentiment means nothing, it’s just pull down destroy and move on. That is not what Liverpool as a club or as a City is about. Far from being the seemingly acceptable image that others have of Liverpudlians, thieves, druggies, and general loafers, WE ARE A PROUD and CARING People, a multi- cultural City, with a deep feeling of sentiment. Proud of our history as a sea port for hundreds of years, proud of our Footballing legacy, both sides of Stanley Park, proud of our Music heritage and proud to be born a Liverpudlian. We are a mighty city and if being sentimental is part of our make-up, long may it continue. A ‘Bastion of Invincibility’ was born at Anfield, and that legacy, must be inter-woven within the fabric of the new stadium, as it is in the fabric of Liverpool football club, and It’s DNA 

  19. I don’t like the gap between the people inside the stadium and the pich i want designers to get it very very close to the pich, i hate this gap.
    i prefer another 2012 design, instead of these 2 old fashion designs.
    just look at what Qatar designed for their future Word cup, they are really consept designs and realy beautiful.
    to me this design is ugly, PLZ Henry change this design..

  20. Just wish that the ground was designed to be more “enclosed” – i.e. no glass and more of a 4 sided type design rather than a bowl / Emirates type thing.

    Would also like to see the outer layer made of red brick – in keeping with that we have at Anfield currently.

    Whilst I love the idea of 18,500 single tier Kop…amd not sure that the new design makes a big enough statement of this.  Would like it to be higher than the other sides of the ground and as intimidating as possible.

  21. Can they minimize the distance between the seats and the pitch ? The 4th pic shows that the crowd is somehow far away from the playground.

  22. It’s whats on the green stuff that’s most important but I must say I preferred the design that’s been scrapped.

  23. Yep not to keen on going back to this old style at all.  The only thing Hicks and Gillette delivered on was a 1st class stadium design.  Ok they never built it, but the design is there in black and white.  Im failing to see what exactly Henry has contributed.  He has bought a club for 300 million which compared to the valuation of Man Utd at 1.5 billion must have been a steal.  If you were to sell Liverpool now with no debts you would probably get close to 500 million.  Now he is ditching a 1st class design for something which in my book is very ordinary.  So again he is underpaying.  Seems a poor choice to me if this is true – preferred to Hicks model 100 times over this.

  24. I hate this design,espesially the gap between the pitch and the touchline, both insde and outside of the stadium is really old fashion,
    i redesigned in 2008 it awfull and ugly 
    plz change it.plz..

  25. Mixing both traditional and modern will benefit both club officials and the fans. The fans are Anfield’s 12th man so I am quite positive that everyone would love to see the traditional hot spots of Anfield stadium remained while adding new ones without destroying our rich history.

  26. Its like the Emirates but with a bigger roof and 2 arcs. The new stadium needs to have a noticable Kop which is on an angle tht accomodates more ppl and looks intimidating. we need the design to keep the noise and atmosphere in. With a Bowl style stadium we dont get that. We want an Atmospheric stadium that looks as unique on the outside as it does on the inside. We dont want a souless dome with no atmosphere like the Emirates and Wembley. We need to stand out and be as unique as the club and our fans. From what Ive been told AFL proposed a 72,000 seater in 2008, only for Hicks to reject it completely and then employed that american firm. Im sure that the old design will be changed slighly and modernised. Im also sure that they will consult the players and fans first too. Could be exciting.

  27. Are people happy with stadium announcement. It looks like any other generic stadium the Emerites for example. I understand there are cost issues but surely it needs it to be unique !!

  28. as good as the stadium looks it’s very similar to the emirates and loks very generic, whilst i disliked what hicks and gillet did, at least their design was very individual.  wish their was more individuality to the design

  29. i think we need to incorporate as much of anfield into the new build as is physically possible! although it breaks my heart just thinkin about leaving anfield, no ground has memories like that place! and paul………..put the gun away mate, kenny needs time 

  30. we love our home very much,but after spending 10-20yrs in it,we look for changes, for renovations,for innovations… having a larger and innovative stadium with more comfort will surely bring in much spectators,thus more funds. but it would be really great if we could renovate Anfield and enlarge it. its history will be preserved :)

  31. This, if accurate, is great news. I’ve been to Anfield many times. It looks old and tired and heavily surrounded by smelly poor quality chip shops. No proper food anywhere. Time to move on to something modern and more comfortable.

  32. We need a proper KOP –  an area behind one goal that is bigger than the opposite side. Anything else just wont do . 

    Also if we have to sell the naming rights it should still be called ANFIELD – eg
    The Reds play at the Anfield Standard Chartered ( or whatever) Stadium – or Anfield for short 

    Anfield is an international  brand in itself and any PR company should want to use that brand to boost their own 

    The alternative – ie The Standard Chartered Stadium sounds utterly rubbish 

  33. [email protected]

    Hate it…. Looks cheap …. Hks 1 is much better our owners doing it on the cheap

  34. SloththeLazy

    I’m from asia and I hope I can set my own foot on the anfield stadium someday before they move out to the new stadium 

  35. SloththeLazy

    I’m from asia and I hope I can set my own foot on the anfield stadium someday before they move out to the new stadium 

  36. Love the thought of getting a new stadium but please lets get some inderviduality in there. This one looks like a cross between Emerites and Wembly. Generic and dull. We need something to build into a new fortress, that requires soul and indeviduality in my opinion.
    Whilst I hated G+H, their stadium looked better than this, apart from the director box’s right in the middle of the kop area! That sucked big balls!

  37. we need are new stadium to be atleast a 70 thousand seater! we are wasteing are time if we build a 60 thousand seater as for too many years now its murder trying to get tickets and the is thousands on the waiting list, and also for atleast 25 years liverpool fc has been loosing its scouse soul, my generation and younger scouse generations have missed out on watching there team, would be good too see scousers get priority for tickets, also for every home game give a different primary school in liverpool some tickets, regarding the new KOP! we cant just build any ordenary kop it has to be unique and should go for the maximum capacity it could hold to put fear into the away team, looking at the manc firms designs we might be useing, it looks too much like wembley! we need a unique stadium for a unique club! the best club in the world!

  38. Both designs are soulless. No character. Hopefully this announcement will lower some of the obsticals stopping the anfield redevelopment.

  39. I sincerely hope that Henry & co are actually going to build a stadium – I really do have my doubts on that score. Also if the stadium they build is 60k seater – well that will make LFC a 3rd rate club because all our putative competitors are in much bigger stadia. It will be hard to give them the benefit of the doubt if they are going to build a too-small stadium and still pay gazillions for it.

  40. Nothing rivals the Kop! I’d be heartbroken if these plans go ahead, Anfield is home, I’d hate to leave! After all the history Liverpool have there, I think part of us would die without Anfield.

  41. Really loved the HKS plans. Iconic, modern, unique and intimidating. The Emirates is a boring bowl like so many others. Anfield is unique and any new stadium needs to be a wee bit different from the rest

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