Time for Liverpool and Everton to re-visit the ground sharing idea?

Everton Goodison 3

Liverpool and Everton, sharing a ground? Shaun Annette discusses why it really does make sense.

With most fans from both clubs very much against the idea of a ground share on Merseyside, is it actually the worst idea in the world?

We all know there is a huge rivalry between the two clubs, but this does not deter other big clubs around the globe from sharing the same football ground. Take the two Milan clubs for example, they have shared a stadium for 66 years and yet their rivalry is one of the biggest in the world; similar with Roma and Lazio also in Serie A.

In the past 10 years both clubs have had opportunities to build a new stadium, but either raising the cash themselves or outside investors pulling out of a deal, meant these projects fell through.

Liverpool are currently looking at expanding Anfield, which is expected to cost in the region of £200million. It would seem they would have to pay from their own funding as it would be very unlikely that they would sell the naming rights to Anfield.

However with planning permission still approved until September 2013 on the Stanley Park project, which was set in place by Liverpool’s previous owners, and designs ready and approved for a high tech stadium - billed to be “The best sports stadium in the world” by Tom Hicks, building work could commence at the earliest convenience of both clubs.

Logically it would make financial sense for both clubs to ground share. To build a new stadium from scratch it would cost in excess of £300million, the club would then have the added expense to maintain a bigger stadium than it currently has.

However if a stadium was shared, then all these costs would immediately be halved, saving each clubs millions in the process.

For the sake of red or blue seats does it really matter, when your club can save upwards of £150million?

Match day revenues would soar and the cost to build the stadium could be paid back in double quick time, and even quicker if a naming rights deal could be struck.

With UEFA financial fair play rules set to be enforced and with the Premier League approving a cap on how finances are spent it is inevitable that match day revenues must be increased if either club is to compete in the future.

Therefore, if a state of the art stadium can be built at half the cost for both clubs and if the right sponsorship deal can be made, would it really put you off as a fan if it was half-owned by your rival?

What are your views, would you be open to a ground share? Or are you completely against it? 

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