Playing in a stadium with a capacity of only 45,000 (and an average attendance of 44,748) hurts Liverpool football club financially and in its ability to compete with the bigger, more successful clubs of the Premier League, which is why the ownership is trying to speed up the plans to expand Anfield, making it the second largest stadium in the league.
According to the £150 million expansion plans (after scrapping the idea of building a new stadium in Stanley Park), the club will need to demolish around 90 houses that surround the ground, and it has already been made into quite a bit of news when it was revealed Liverpool are keeping homes empty around the stadium in case the expansion plan kicks in to full gear in the near future.
Anfield will grow into a 60,000-seater, just a bit over the Emirates in London, where Arsenal play. Liverpool were ranked fifth this season in the Premier League when it came to matchday attendance, falling behind Manchester United, Arsenal, Newcastle and Manchester City.
There are three core revenue streams – media, commercial and matchday. Our media and commercial revenues are very impressive, but where we fall behind is our matchday revenues. Having a bigger stadium and playing in the Champions League are two mechanisms which would dramatically change our fortunes.
We’re determined to press on with the stadium solution. It’s in the hands of other people, but hopefully we will get there and deliver what our fans want.
The expansion program would see the Main Stand and Anfield Road End grow, in partnership with Liverpool City Council and social housing developer Your Housing, which requires they complete the purchasing and demolition of the 90 houses required to be removed. Once the acquisitions are completed, Liverpool can submit a planning application before the start of next season.