With Liverpool set to announce later on this season the expansion of the Anfield Road end which will take the capacity of Anfield up to 61,000 I’ve decided to give my opinion on five ways I think Liverpool can improve the stadium to make it even greater.
Number one) Fixing the Kop: Paul alluded to this in one of his shows on his channel last week and I just wanted to elaborate further on this aspect. As great as the Kop is right now it’s not the force that it once was and unfortunately I think it has lost some of the fear factor that opponents used to dread. Dave Kirby, the well known poet, once described the Kop as a “deafening cauldron of noise” and I agree, that used to be the case however in recent seasons the noise from the Kop has died dramatically.
Don’t get me wrong we still get glimpses of its former glory especially on those big European nights but it’s rare and far between that we actually see and hear the Kop in all its glory. How do we fix this? A lot has been talked about regarding safe standing and I feel this is an area where Liverpool need to be leading the way in bringing this idea into football. We have to do this in a respectful way, obviously what happened at Hillsborough should never be forgotten and we should never forget the mistakes that were made, however I do think that there is a place for safe standing areas within football grounds and I would like to see the Kop being the first stand in England to implement this on a large scale.
Imagine everyone in the Kop standing, chanting and singing and just think about what an awesome site that would be for our players but also what a terrifying site that will be for any opposition coming to Anfield. I don’t care if you’re Real Madrid, Barcelona or Bayern Munich, players will be scared of that site and I think this could give us as a significant advantage in those big games at Anfield.
Number two) Disabled facilities: As a disabled person in a wheelchair I must say I am very impressed with the facilities at Anfield at the minute, but I do think we could improve on this. Firstly the wheelchair bays in the Kop which are located right at the front could be improved a lot. For those of you that have sat in those bays you will know that you’re actually sitting slightly below pitch level therefore your vision is obstructed by the players and especially photographers.
Don’t get me wrong I love sitting in the front of the Kop but I do think the wheelchair bays could do with being raised by a good two foot, this will make it easier for people in wheelchairs to see the game. I would also like to see wheelchair bays at the heart of the Kop right in the middle of the stand. I’ve seen a couple of the YouTube videos from Chris and Paul sitting right in the middle of the Kop and it looks awesome.
As a wheelchair user myself I would love to experience that, especially when Liverpool score a goal, what I would like to see is a platform made in the middle of the Kop especially for wheelchair users so that we can all experience what it’s like being at the heart of a Kop. I would also like to see Liverpool put in more hoist in the disabled toilets. At the minutes as far as I’m aware of there is only one hoist in one disabled toilet within the whole stadium and that is at the Kop end, I would like to see Liverpool implement one or two more hoist into disabled toilets into different stands so that if a disabled person requires a hoist to use the toilet they don’t always have to sit in the Kop.
Number three) A big screen: With VAR coming into play very soon I think Liverpool really need to look at putting a big screen up somewhere within the stadium so when the referee is accessing the VAR fans can see exactly what is going on. We saw from the West Brom game how confusing the new system can be for supporters within the stadium, even though I think it will get better for the fans Liverpool also need to make sure that they are in a position to deal with any updates that the football governing bodies make to the VAR system. A big screen is a must moving forward.
Number four) Increase car parking: If Liverpool are going to increase the capacity within the stadium by another 7,000 they need to look at increasing the car parking facilities for everyone. In theory once the Anfield Road end has been expanded capacity would have increased by almost 20,000 from before the Main Stand was developed. Potentially that could be 20,000 more vehicles on a match day surrounding the stadium which in itself would make parking on the streets a nightmare. I’m not quite sure how Liverpool would do this but I think it’s something that the club really need to look into especially with more and more people coming to Anfield.
Number five) improving the multi-faith facilities: As a practicing Muslim I used the multi-faith room at Anfield every time I go out for a game. Those of you that are unaware of where this is, it is located on the outside of the Main Stand, a few feet away from the Hillsborough memorial. I would personally like to say I am very grateful of Liverpool Football Club for providing this facility and for giving me and other fans a place to go and fulfill our religion requirements.
However I do think Liverpool can improve this slightly, I feel that wash facilities are really needed in the multi-faith room and I know from talking to other people who use the facility that a lot of fans feel the same, I’m not talking about installing a massive shower in there but just a little basin with the tap would be brilliant and I know loads of fans would really appreciate it.
Also there needs to be some way of accessing the room from inside the stadium so that fans are not having to go back out of the stadium just to use the room, I know that this is a problem especially at half time and I too have experienced this, regulatory having to find a corner in the stadium just to say my prayers. It will be better for many fans they were able to access the room easier.
These are just five ways that I think Liverpool can work on to make Anfield better, if you have any other suggestions please drop a comment below, I would be interested to see what other supporters have to say.
Article by Imraan Adam
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