Liverpool’s principal owner John Henry has cut short ambitious thoughts that the Anfield road stand could be refurbished as there isn’t enough money due to the club’s inability to increase the price of tickets.
In February, Liverpool supporters conducted a mass walkout at Anfield during a Premier League game against Sunderland where more than 10,000 supporters left the stadium in the 77th minute to protest an absurd new price scaling plan that FSG brought out.
Credit where it’s due, FSG immediately declared a two-year ticket price freeze. While the gesture was full of good intentions, it means that revenue generated from ticket sales won’t be increased for the next year and a half. The impact that this will have is that there won’t enough money for projects like upgrading the stadium or signing Lionel Messi.
The Main Stand has already been developed so it’s not like Liverpool supporters haven’t been treated yet. The renovation was long overdue, however, as the likes of Arsenal and the Manchester clubs all have stadiums with capacities exceeding 60,000 seats – even West Ham has an 80,000 seater!
As reported by the Associated Press, Henry said,: “I don’t know if there is a next step because ticket prices are an issue in England.
“That may foreclose further expansion. We’ll have to see.”
Further renovation of Anfield is inevitable, however, it is uncertain when such development will be put into process due to the issue of finding funds. As the price of tickets can’t and won’t be increased before 2018, FSG will need to be creative in financing this project.
Just a disclaimer: just because there is a price freeze until 2018, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the cost of tickets will be increased. FSG has realised that the Liverpool fanbase is not one to be trifled with and that the people who pay to watch the team every week are loyal but also work very hard for their money.
While this may be true, the club will have difficulty in growing without the increase in matchday costs – even with the number of sponsors a club like Liverpool has.
Be patient, Liverpool is a stirring giant and Anfield is slowly being returned to a fortress. Just remember, in the 70s and 80s, there was no behemoth of a Main Stand and yet European domination was achieved.