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Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Bradley: I've been working on a Everton/Liverpool shared stadium plan

Warren BradleyFollowing on from Labour leader Joe Anderson's claim that Liverpool City council should be doing more for Everton FC, Liverpool Liberal Democrats and council leader Warren Bradley has stated his personal preference would also be for Everton to redevelop Goodison Park.

In March last year he told those in attendance at the inaugural KEIOC meeting that land behind Bullens Road stand including Gwladys Street Primary school would become available to extend the footprint of Goodison Park. He stated that one primary school in the area would have to be closed due to Walton's dwindling population and the council's decision would be made easier should Everton FC make a firm commitment to stay at Goodison Park.

Councillor Warren Bradley and opposition leader Joe Anderson's preference to keep Everton at Goodison Park is supported by findings in a recently released report by DTZ stating that Everton FC currently brings approximately £9million into the local economy on an annual basis.

Today, he revealed that the council have been doing a lot behind the scenes to try and secure Everton's status as a Liverpool club.

Councillor Bradley said: "I'd back the redevelopment of Goodison first and foremost as an Everton season ticket holder, but you can't unless Everton make a commitment."

Everton's public relations officer Ian Ross told the Liverpool Daily Post that Everton have "been open to approaches and negotiations with Liverpool City Council" despite claims from within the council stating the club have hidden behind a 'exclusivity agreement' with Tesco and Knowsley Council.

Warren Bradley stated that Everton are more than welcome to enter negotiations to Liverpool City Council: “If they want to come to the table, we're always ready and willing."

He also said that he had been speaking to several key bodies with regards to a shared stadium with Liverpool including the Everton chairman and Evertonian sports minister Andy Burnham: “I've also been working behind the scenes on a joint Liverpool and Everton stadium. I've talked to the sports minister and to the NWDA and I've spoken to Bill Kenwright." It is believed that a shared stadium would reduce the cost of building a stadium to both clubs due to the availability of public funding.

He went onto to reveal that Liverpool City Council would again be “opposing the Kirkby bid on planning grounds” after Tesco made amendments to the Destination Kirkby plans.

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