Anfield’s next expansion may be larger than planned

The next proposed expansion of Anfield may be more substantial than initially envisioned.

Capacity at Liverpool’s stadium rose by about 8,500 to approximately 54,000 with the opening of a new Main Stand for the 2016-17 season. Chief executive Peter Moore, during an interview Wednesday at the headquarters of AP, said the permit allowing an expansion of about 4,000 to the Anfield Road end will be allowed to expire in September.

“That is insufficient for our plans. We’re continuing to analyze what is the optimum number,” he said. “I think in the next few months you’re going to hear from us as regards to what those plans will be. I can tell you definitively it won’t be the rather small-to-medium plans we had recently.”

Moore later added: “Of course the potential exists that following the feasibility study the initial plans may change” and said he did not want to pre-empt the study by making a premature decision.

Moore said the club faces challenges because the stadium is in a residential area, and it plans to work with the City Council and neighborhood groups. Liverpool has frozen ticket prices for four straight seasons.

“You just can’t build this massive stadium without limits here. We’re very cognizant of the impact we have on the residents,” he said. “The ability to get people into a ground and get them out of the ground is important as well as the size of what we’re building.”

Coming off its sixth European title, Liverpool tied Lisbon-based Sporting CP 2-2 on Wednesday night at Yankee Stadium to complete a three-match U.S. preseason tour that opened with games at Notre Dame Stadium and Boston’s Fenway Park. The club also brought along its women’s team, which played a pair of friendlies, and has three camera crews generating constant content.

Liverpool was bought in 2010 by what is now known as Fenway Sports Group, owner of the Boston Red Sox and headed by John Henry, Tom Werner and Michael Gordon. The Liverpool-born Moore, who worked previously at Reebok, Microsoft and Electronic Arts, was hired in 2017 and reports to Gordon. He sees Henry’s impact.

“John has been incredibly helpful in applying the mentality of the Red Sox as regards to data, analytics, science, really making us a world-class operation in those areas, when we look at player identification, recruitment, maintaining player talent,” Moore said.

Liverpool has 12.1 million followers on its English-language Twitter feed, fourth behind United (19.8 million), Arsenal (14.6 million) and Chelsea (13.1).

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