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Merseyside derby could be played at Goodison Park

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11 Jun 2020
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Everton

The Merseyside derby has been cleared to take place at Everton’s Goodison Park Stadium while Liverpool can play home matches at Anfield when the PL season restarts.

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Before football’s suspension, Liverpool was 25 points clear at the top with the “thirst” to lift the Premier League title after 30 years.

Everton will host Liverpool on the 21st June-a match that was considered a risk because of fears fans could congregate outside the ground. Probably, the match could be the first chance for the Reds to clinch the long-awaited title.

The Reds can win their first league title by beating Everton-if second-placed Manchester City lose at home to Arsenal on 17th June.

Southampton’s St Mary’s had been earmarked as a potential neutral venue. But Liverpool’s ground safety advisory group has now recommended that both Everton and Liverpool can play their remaining home fixtures “safely and securely” behind closed doors at their stadiums.

The group’s chair, Wendy Simon, a counselor and Liverpool City Council’s deputy mayor, told BBC Sports there was “no evidence” fans would congregate.

A joint statement by Blue Union and Spirit of Shankly, supporters’ group of Everton and Liverpool respectively read, “We are confident that supporters of these two great clubs will respect safety advice about avoiding visiting stadiums where home and away fixtures are taking place”.

‘We fully understand the importance of lockdown as a measure to control COVID-19 and would encourage fans to stay away from any stadium and avoid congregating in numbers”.

The group making the decision included representatives from the police, fire service, and both club’s fan groups.

A safety certificate is now expected to be granted by the relevant licensing committee.

“A lot of factors have been taken into consideration, especially the safety of the players, match officials and staff in attendance”. Said Simon.

“We are confident the measures in place will allow the matches to be held behind closed doors without any detrimental impact to all concerned and recommend to the city council that the safety certificates for both grounds be amended to allow this to happen”.

 

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