Liverpool still confident over stadium

December 20, 2007

Liverpool insist plans for their new stadium are still on track despite some uncertainty over the long-term funding arrangements.

The club's American owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett have had to postpone plans to borrow the £300million needed for the project until 2009 due to the global credit crunch.

Club sources say, despite this, the stadium plans are proceeding according to schedule in terms of the planning, design and initial construction of the Stanley Park ground.

Hicks and Gillett are expected to re-finance the £220million loan used to buy the club in February.

The new £350million loan with the Royal Bank of Scotland would include £60million to get work on the new stadium started and £25million to cover the cost of last summer's signings.

A club source told PA Sport: 'The stadium plans are still on track although, as was stated publicly earlier this week, the design may have to be scaled down in terms of extravagance.

'There is some tough talking going on between the Americans and the banks but the stadium plan is financially sound and on track.'

Earlier this week, the club confirmed they had been forced to scrap their futuristic design for the stadium because of spiralling costs.

What may prove controversial however is if Hicks and Gillett follow the Glazers' example at Manchester United and put some of the new debt on the club - something the American tycoons said they would not do when they took over earlier this year.

Gillett said in February: 'We have purchased the club with no debt on the club so, in that regard, it is different (to the Glazers).

'We believe in the future of the club, the future of the league, the new TV contracts are outstanding and we are proud to be a part of it.'

It has also been reported that Liverpool would have to pay around £30million in interest to finance the loans.