Liverpool’s Anfield stadium plans to be revealed this month, prior to Chelsea match

Liverpool are set to reveal the long-awaited plans for an expanded Anfield on the last weekend of April, prior to the visit of Chelsea.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 30, 2014: A general view of Liverpool's Anfield Stadium, from the Spion Kop showing the Main Stand and Anfield Road stand, before the Premiership match against Tottenham Hotspur at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)
Liverpool plan to redevelop Anfield’s Main Stand and Anfield Road Stand (above). Photo: David Rawcliffe/Propaganda.

EXCLUSIVE, BY ALEX MILLER

Officials close to Liverpool recently suggested the date had slipped back by a few days to 26th or 27th April – nothing to be concerned about, these things happen – otherwise we would already have been able to see the plans by now.

Liverpool appointed highly-respected London-based architects KSS to work on the stadium redevelopment plans – the same company that oversaw the design of executive areas at the City of Manchester Stadium in 2002, the Chelsea Village at Stamford Bridge and the company behind the designs of the proposed new stadium for Tottenham.

The designs – when they are unveiled – will detail the club’s plans to increase the capacity of the famous stadium to 58,500 in two stages.

An expanded Main Stand is the club’s priority but Liverpool will also seek planning permission to refurbish the Anfield Road end – however that stand is viewed as the second phase of building work, which will only begin once the Main Stand has been completed.

Sources close to the project say that the current seated section of the Main Stand will remain, with the old roof being removed.

Two new tiers will be added meaning the Main Stand becomes one huge three-tiered stand with a capacity of over 20,000. The Anfield Road Stand will simply look like a bigger version of the current one.

The Liverpool City Council document, called the ‘Anfield Spatial Regeneration Framework’, confirms that the Main Stand will become the biggest stand in the ground, eclipsing The Kop, which has a capacity of 12,390.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, February 8, 2014: The view from the Spion Kop at Liverpool's Anfield home before the Premiership match against Arsenal. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The same sources also believe that the new stands will not look out of place, in other words they will sit neatly alongside the two stands that will remain unchanged – The Kop and Centenary Stand – rather than stick out like a sore thumb.

This is very believable when you bear in mind the excellent way in which John Henry redeveloped and knitted together the old and new buildings at Fenway Park, the spiritual home of his beloved Boston Red Sox.

So rest assured, the new-look Anfield will retain its distinct character and thankfully the stadium won’t end up looking like it came flat-packed from Ikea.

In addition, the atmosphere at Anfield will be retained as the distance from the pitch will be unchanged. We also know that all extension and redevelopment work will go on around the current stands, so that fans will not be prevented from attending due to a reduced temporary capacity. Another plus of working this way is that the club won’t miss out on crucial match day revenues.

While on the subject of revenues, Liverpool have comprehensively ruled out selling the naming rights to Anfield.

Again for clues, look across the pond and consider how John Henry approached the stadium expansion in Boston. He has constantly resisted the urge to enter a naming rights deal on Fenway Park, considered to be the most historic stadium in baseball.

Naming rights haven’t happened at Fenway and they won’t happen in L4 even though companies would be very eager to spend millions of pounds to splash their brands across both grounds.

However, sponsorship deals for the naming rights to the new Main Stand and Anfield Road Stands as individual stands are under discussion. Although club officials insist that finance for the expansion projects aren’t in any way dependent on them.

Out of interest, leading sports marketing experts suggest that naming rights for the two stands could generate as much as £3-5million a year for Liverpool, which would represent welcome additional revenues, alongside the increased revenues from the additional 14,000 fans who will soon be able to attend match days.

The view of the Anfield pitch from the Main Stand, centre of Block MW.

Liverpool’s current match day revenues are in the region of £45m a year, but the new stadium is likely to boost that figure considerably towards the likes of Arsenal who currently generate a whopping £92m a year from the Emirates. In the age of FFP that will prove critical to a resurgent Liverpool.

We eagerly look forward to the visit of Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea but equally so, we look forward to seeing the stadium plans, which will represent a glimpse into the future of our great club, one that looks increasingly ready to sit back on our perch.

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  • CARR71

    the annie road end is as historic as the kop to some fans and should always be know as the anfield road end

    • arthurblundell

      Hey Jason!!…Just wondering,are you busy tomorrow?.

      • CARR71

        i am of to the match arthur why .any thing i can do for you mate i will do
        as long as its within my powers

        • arthurblundell

          Just buggin,I a wish i could be there.have great a great day.

          • CARR71

            you will get over one day mate ,your always welcome to stay at mine for a few days

  • LondonBarnes

    Any chance that the Kop or Centenary will ever be redeveloped or expanded? Or is 58.5K the maximum capacity they can get?

    • http://www.thisisanfield.com This Is Anfield

      No, not feasible. Only filling in corners but it’s expensive for the little gain.

      • paul

        with respect, that’s bollox. the Kop could easily have added 2,000 extra seats by simply squaring out the back of it. the club wouldn’t even need to adjust the roof. you see the reason why the Kop was first built in the zig zag shape in 1994 was because of neighbouring Lake Street (right of light issues and all that jazz). but this street was knocked down in the early 2000’s and so that wouldn’t represent an issue to development anymore. it would represent an extra 2,000 seats for very little outlay. another opportunity missed.

  • Gano1

    Great news and FSG have done as they said they would do, deliver.

    • CARR71

      what an extra 14,000 seats ,its not a lot really have you seen the prices the tickets are going for ,for the man city game i would have liked to see 65,00 minimum build it and they will come;-)

      • Gano1

        I know Jas but to be fair to FSG, they cut the older players on big wages and yet we are top of the league, now we get 14,000 more seats without losing any revenue at all……………….It is great news.

        • CARR71

          yes its good news but they should be looking to maximise the capacity the main stand is the dearest part of the ground and annie road as a fair few hospitality seats i wonder how many seats will be available to the working man

          • jamie

            Hopefully there are plans to put a third tierd on the cent. stand

          • CARR71

            if they were they would have put it in as phase 3

          • paul

            impossible that one mate. it is already maxed out as it is. the club had a chance back in the 1990’s to do that when they owned lots of houses in the adjacent Skerries Road. but all these houses have now been done up (to a high spec) and are all fully occupied. future developments can only consist of:

            squaring out the back of the Kop (2,000 seats).
            “filling in” the huge spaces between the Main Stand/Kop and/or Main stand/Anfield Road end. that could add several thousand extra seats if the club could be persuaded to carry out the developments. but i wouldn’t hold my breadth with FSG whose ethos seems to be to maximise revenue for every seat and keeping the demand for tickets much higher than supply.

          • Gano1

            Let’s see what Liverpool say by the Chelsea game, I trust this site not to run garbage stories, It will be interesting to see what actually is announced in conjunction with the Mayor (Joe Anderson), Council and Your Housing…………..regarding the hotel build and wider regeneration of the area.

          • 1Liverpoolforever1

            The fact is : the strategie to increase revenues (to the level of competting with the financial mastodonts as Arsenal or United) does not consist in increasing the number of “working man” seats but in adding the business facilities that Anfield lacks. I don’t make any judgement on this, just expose the fact.
            FSG are looking for the right balance between expanding Anfield and keeping incomes during the works and afterwards. They’re looking for the best financial option, hence not spending money by the windows.
            My personal opinion is : i’m feeling a bit disappointed, i thought they were going to expand Anfield a bit more (over 60k). But perhaps they’re already thinking of expanding the other half of the stadium, who knows.

          • paul

            very few! we already charge the most money for our “cheapest seats”. yes, even more than arsenal who charge £31 for their cheap seats. ours are £38. and for that, you get to watch the match in the Anfield Road (lower), from what is akin to viewing the game through a letterbox! and a very cramped letterbox at that!

      • http://www.thisisanfield.com This Is Anfield

        FSG made a commitment to provide a stadium of approx. 60,000 seats. They are doing so.

        • paul

          58,500 (it’s actually 58,551) is not 60,000 though mate. we are Liverpool. the 2nd biggest supported club in the land! so it follows that we deserve to have the 2nd biggest stadium.

          • Abhishek Karmakar

            He did say “approx.” not exact.

        • CARR71

          yes they are still will not meet the demands though will it ,

      • j75j

        No mention of how many more Directors Boxes are being added! That’s most probably where the extra 10000 seats have gone!

        • CARR71

          they will get in as many fat cats as they can and the local supporters will hardly see much difference when it comes to tickets for the big games ,who wants to sit in a box when you can be part of the crowd

  • CARR71

    they will mate a lot will be hospitality

  • Colm

    Would love to know what it means in terms of extra revenue. An extra 13k seats is maybe another 500k a game from tickets plus maybe 125k in booze and food? 6-8 players’ salaries?

    • Gano1

      £70m + in gate receipts.

      • Colm

        Where did you get that number from mate? That would be great obviously!

        • Gano1

          Liverpool Echo will be running it directly from LFC, wait for that.

        • paul

          but to attain £70M in gate receipts, imagine the prices we will be paying? i’ll tell you, Arsenal prices! but this isn’t London and we don’t get London salaries here! we should be charging what other big northern clubs like Man City, Newcastle, Sunderland and Everton. not 2 to 3 times as much. we even presently charge more (per AVERAGE ticket) than Man United would you believe. their tickets range from £31 to £54. ours from £38 to £52. you just couldn’t make it up could you!

          • CARR71

            paul totally agree with you ,although i am not from liverpool the club as a duty to help keep the locals involved with the club
            i have said this before but would it be that hard to give a discount depending on the postcode,at the end of the day the club is a liverpool club and the locals should be made to feel a bit extra special,we also need the local kids to follow the team they should be a junior section with huge discounts for the local lads

          • paul

            exactly mate. the club had the perfect opportunity (maybe only ever opportunity) to build a decent sized stadium with adequate provisions for local fans and kids to follow their team. i.e. the “fill in” spaces between MainStand/Kop and MainStand/Anfield Road could have been utilised as a sort of family enclosures to house them (and inject some much needed local/future support) for our great club. at present we have only 800 places set aside for kids in a 45,500 stadium! the likes of Man City, Sunderland, Newcastle, etc have virtually 50% of the stadium allocated for the younger fans. eg. under 16’s, 17-18, 19-21. etc. but no FSG have chosen to cater mainly for the corporate/richer out of town fan. now don’t get me wrong, these are important and the club do need to maximise revenues in these areas. but more seating should have been set aside for the local /under 16’s fan base. yep the 65,000 model should have been what we were constructing. afterall, we have proven to long be the 2nd biggest supported club historically. therefore, it follows we deserve the 2nd biggest stadium. this development will continue to keep supply far less than demand.

          • CARR71

            i remember when a pint was 80 pence 20 fags £1.50 and people moan like hell about how much these have gone up
            well lets look at the kop the same time it was about £1.80 for kids and £2.50 for adults yet nothing is mentioned or done about it by the owners

          • paul

            you sound about the same age as me mate. i too remember only paying £1.80 to get into the Kop in 1985-86 as a 16 year old. God knows how much it has gone up since compared to inflation!

          • CARR71

            yes i am about the same age the good old days ,tickets allocated to proper fans ,go to the lesser games get a voucher for the big games ,away tickets were a lot easier to get as well
            i loved that season that was the one when i went most every game at anfield and a fair few away ones
            lets hope we see the good old days return today at least on the pitch and in the atmosphere

          • paul

            yes proper season. i went loads of away matches too. all that on £27 YTS wages too! was affordable with plenty of junior tickets available at Anfield. that’s what strikes me most about football at Anfield in the modern age. the lack of kids places available. now if the club had built the 65K stadium (with plenty of kids tickets available), we would be on a level playing field with every other club in the League. as it really is only us who don’t cater for the next generation of fan! even Man United offer thousands of places for their kids. i will say it once again. this new ground development is one of pure greed. get ready for Arsenal style prices (without London style wages!). FSG = greedy carpetbaggers!

          • CARR71

            well mate you will get no argument about fsg from me ,got to go now enjoy the match ,i will be singing my head of in the annie road end

          • paul

            nice one! i will be watching in the Pub! and sky plussing at same time! come on you red men. make us dream!

          • CW

            I’m generally curious if you’d prefer FSG sold the team to a sheik. Can we give some credit to the guys who brought BR (and considered Martinez) when many fans screamed for Rafa or AVB. They formed a fans committee to help understand needs of fans. Lowered wage bill, lowered age of players, drastically improved the team (just look at the squad they took over one more time) and have helped put the team in a position to make a title challenge and bring back CL in a year the team was predicted by most to finish 6th or 7th. I understand much of this is probably due to the fortune of having BR and other professional opinions they rely on. They are addressing the stadium as they have said they would but it isn’t good enough. There were plans to replace the stadium in 2002 TWELVE years ago(to 60,000) and no one has done it. Everyone is entitled to opinions, you don’t have to like them, you can call them greedy (the best way to make money is for them to win) but at least give some credit where it is due. The ownership could be much worse. PERIOD.

            If they don’t splash a ton of money in the summer after qualifying for CL I will tend to agree more with the “haters” but I honestly think they’re doing the utmost to generate income in the form of sponsorships, increasing capacity, rights, etc. to spend what they generate under the watch of FFP. They need to be “greedy” to generate revenue to spend on players and they get criticized for not outbidding the likes of Chelsea for transfers in the meantime… we can’t have both. This summer will be the first time under FSG that a transfer target can’t use no CL as a reason to turn down LFC so a lot of light will be shed on FSGs true ambition then.

  • Nelly79

    Less is more

  • paul

    sorry to dampen the fire but it’s only an extra 13,000 seats not 15,000. the current capacity is 45,500 (although this figure is never achieved due to segregation in the Anfield Road end). compare this with Man City who are expanding their stadium to over 62,000. and get this. new season tickets for the two new stands at the Etihad will go on sale at £299. i.e. the cheapest in the premiership. we will be getting charged at least 4 times this amount for our new seats. at least 4 times as much!

    • http://www.thisisanfield.com This Is Anfield

      Man City are in the fortunate (maybe) position in that their stadium is in the middle of nowhere and not penned in by houses / roads etc.

      • paul

        that is true. but Liverpool could easily have built bigger stands in the new development. ie. the new Anfield Road development could have been built much bigger. instead they are not taking up all the room available (i know someone who is working on the new drainage system), but instead are allowing new apartments to be built overlooking the park right where the stand could have been maxed out to. i feel this is a huge chance missed as the new Anfield Road end could easily have been the biggest cantilever stand in the country (if the space presently behind the current stand had been fully utilised). 58,500 is simply not enough for the 2nd biggest supported club in the Premiership! the club should have aimed for 65,000 with possibly fill in developments between the Kop/Main stand and/or Anfield Road/Main Stand. these extra tickets could have been set aside for the next generation of fans. ie. our kids. it is worth bearing in mind that we have the lowest allocation of junior places in the Premiership. just 800 places in the north west corner of the Anfield Road (upper) end. contrast this with all other clubs in the Premiership (including Man united) who offer a variety of concessionary tickets for the under 16’s, 17-18, 19-21, etc in ALL parts of the stadium. this development smacks of the club continuing to keep demand way ahead of supply. nothing has really changed am afraid.

  • Goh Jun Ling

    I couldn’t feel more grateful towards FSG as a fan, the details they look into preserving the club culture, the consideration of fans, and bringing the club back to healthy states, not to mention the hands in need where we’re in the brinks of abyss. I always thought the prolonged and postponed announcement of the stadium expansion are due to financial and town planning issues, then I realise the harder route they took just so it doesn’t affect the fans, while also preserving the atmostphere, and now I understand more of why they strongly reject the idea of new stadium, it’s not just because of its past history, but also the future glory we are going to build upon all the million glorious moments of the past, here, at Anfield! We, are the Kop! YNWA!

  • Butragenio

    Maybe they can make the pitch smaller and add some more rings at the bottom

    • paul

      the pitch barely meets UEFA playing regulations as it is! hence the club not able to use the first 4 or 5 rows of seating for European matches. the answer would have been to increase the footprint by extending the pitch length ways. as they are still not maximising the space behind the vacant Anfield Road end. yet another chance missed by FSG.

      • Ridwan Nurzeha

        they would have considered that option but they may have other considerations.

        • paul

          Liverpool need to expand the length and width of the pitch/ and increase the space between the edge of the pitch and the first rows of seating. it is just far too cramped. both for UEFA regulations and the new SKY/BT deals. we need to increase the overall footprint of Anfield.

      • Rak S

        “Yet another chance missed by FSG!!!”
        FSG would undoubtedly considered this option and until the plans are released, we won’t actually know which designs/plans they’ll go with.
        Do you think you know more about Stadium design and maximising capacity/revenue than FSG and a team of specialist architects?

        • paul

          with respect, I reckon I know a considerable more about the
          ground redevelopment than you mate. I have known about
          the new ground capacity figure of 58,551 since January. my mate works on the
          ground staff at Anfield and has kept me informed on developments over the last
          3 years. I have even seen the sketches for the forthcoming Main Stand design
          plans! in fact whilst I am at it, I will tell you what else is in store:

          1. if
          they can’t get the viewing angles from the extreme left hand and right hand
          sides of the Main stand, the capacity will be even lower than the 58,551
          figure. the club are worried about the roofing on the Kop and Anfield Road stands
          restricting views from those corners of the Main Stand affected. so it might
          not even be 58,551 yet. that figure is provisional. apparently, they might be
          able to adjust the Anfield Road
          roof (when that development takes place in 2016), but there are no plans to
          alter the Kop’s roof so that part of the Main Stand might be affected.

          2. the
          club are not even utilising all the space available behind the Anfield Road end.
          in fact, new apartments are being constructed overlooking Stanley Park.
          thereby robbing the club of extending the pitch length ways and finally
          complying with UEFA regulations. if you have ever been to anfield (which I
          doubt), you will know that it isn’t exactly roomy! I know that’s part of the ground’s
          charm, but it’s also a shame that the club can’t even host a UEFA final. also
          the club looses out on extra revenue every time the club plays in Europe at home. as the first 4 or 5 rows of seating at
          each end of the ground aren’t allowed to be used. if the club had pursued
          extending the pitch (and they will probably never get that chance again), they
          could have killed two birds with the one stone. i.e. finally compelled
          with UEFA and gave the ground some much needed space into the bargain.

          3.
          Visiting fans are to be into the other corner of Anfield Road in 2018 (on completion of
          the Anfield Road
          stand).

          but
          the main issues I have with the club is we are not planning for the future. we
          are simply doing a make do and mend on the ground. where FSG is maximising
          revenue for every seat in the stand at the expense of implementing a more
          fairer ticketing structure that caters for the lower income fan and the next
          generation of fans i.e. the kids! we are currently limited to a maximum of 800
          junior places in the whole stadium! 800 places out of 45,500! that’s a disgrace
          initself! and I can’t see this mini-development addressing the problem.
          contrast this with other clubs in the Premiership, who offer a variety of concessionary
          tickets to junior supporters in virtually every part of the stadium, check out
          Man city, Man United, Everton, Arsenal, Newcastle, Sunderland, etc where yopu
          will find a variety of junior ticket prices for the under 11’s, under 16’s,
          17-18, 19-21 etc. No FSG’s reign is based on greed! pure greed! check out their
          Fenway Park
          developments in Boston!
          where prices have shot up when compared to any of their rivals. and for
          Liverpool FC this is an sustainable model! this isn’t a rich part of the
          country. it isn’t London!
          in fact Anfield itself is one of the most deprived council wards in the whole country.
          like most areas of Liverpool and Merseyside
          are! you might be able to afford to blow £200 at the match but most Liverpool fans up this way can’t! let alone take their 2
          sons to the game!

          • Rak S

            Why do you doubt I’ve ever been to Anfield? What have I written here, or anywhere else, that suggests that’s the case?

            Secondly, perhaps you have an “inside man” perhaps you don’t. Ultimately, why would FSG not look at all the available options? It makes no sense at all!
            Furthermore, you seem to be suggesting that they chose an option that is potentially less seating for little extra cost. Again, that doesn’t seem to make sense.

            A large element of the reconstruction is to cater for corporate hospitality. That’s pretty clear, but you’re suggesting that, for little extra cost, they don’t want to add additional “regular” seating. Either FSG are silly, the cost is prohibitive, or you’re wrong.

  • j75j

    How many more directors boxes are there going to be??? That’s where the real money is going to becoming from at games. £5500 for the Man City game tomorrow!!!

    • Rak S

      I remember reading that the corporate sections will expand by 3500 attendees.

  • paul

    i do. it totally winds me up! makes it look like we can’t sell out our matches!

  • paul

    there is plenty more that can be done (on the existing footprint):
    2,000 seats added by squaring out the back of Kop (no need for redevelopment of Kop roof either).
    “fill in” the space between Kop/MainStand and MainStand/Anfield Road end (probably an extra 5,000 places).

    that would get us up towards 65,000 and allow more cheaper tickets for our local fans/next generation of fans in these new sections. but no FSG will continue to squeeze the fans until the pips squeak. be prepared for Arsenal priced tickets (just like they did at Boston).

    • Ridwan Nurzeha

      maybe they will consider that in 2nd phase.

      • paul

        nope. that’s the absolute maximum we are getting (I know someone who works on the ground staff at Anfield). I have known about the 58,500 figure for months. actually the exact figure is 58,551.

        • Ridwan Nurzeha

          I was happy when it rumoured will be 65000 seats. When the design comes to public? at the end of this month?

          • paul

            yeah in 2 weeks. the Chelsea game. we need 65K for our massive fan base. we have waited long enough! if FSG can’t deliver, then they should sod off and sell to someone who can achieve our goal.

  • Ridwan Nurzeha

    maybe TV deal money from that extra camera’s >> money from 200 seats. just maybe.

  • Stuey Anderton

    Does this mean I will have to queue longer for my half time pie? :)

  • Abhishek Karmakar

    I think I remember reading somewhere that Anfield is the loudest stadium in England, and mostly because it’s small and packed. 58,500 is a nice addition, hopefully it would still maintain the loudness.