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Many more problems on the horizon for Everton FC

The club is haemorrhaging money in a major way and their new stadium, plus general running costs and player transfers, are paid for by loans on top of loans, on top of loans.

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An artist’s impression of Everton’s new stadium on the banks of the River Mersey. Photo courtesy of Everton Football Club

Paul Kennedy

It’s probably been more than 20 years since I last watched a match at Goodison Park, home of Everton Football Club, and even back then, the ground had seen better days.

Goodison is steeped in history. In 1966, the last time the World Cup was held in England, the stadium hosted a number of games and even the late, great Pele played there, and scored.

In the 1970s and 80s it was considered one of the better stadiums in England and hosted FA Cup semi-finals.

More recently, it was creaking at the seams as thousands of passionate fans packed into the stadium to cheer Everton as they battled relegation in back-to-back seasons. And it worked.

It was even featured in the 2015 movie Creed, starring Michael B Jordan and Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa.

But Goodison Park’s days are numbered, and soon it will be no more. Everton are moving to a fabulous new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock on the banks of the River Mersey.

And while the move is long overdue, I will be sad to see the end of Goodison Park. I’ve plenty of happy memories, and a few sad ones, from watching games there.

However, even though Everton’s new home is close to completion, problems could soon appear on the horizon.

Everton are up to their eyes in debt. The club is haemorrhaging money in a major way and their new stadium, plus general running costs and player transfers, are paid for by loans on top of loans, on top of loans.

You would need a Master’s Degree in advanced accounting to understand the exact extent of their financial problems.

Recently, Everton announced that Miami-based investment firm 777 Partners are on the verge of a takeover and are waiting for approval from the Premier League, Football Association and the Financial Conduct Authority to become Everton’s owner.

Everton are desperate. And I fear they may have put all their eggs into 777’s basket, and if, for some reason, the powers that be decide to veto the takeover, then it may be sometime before a ball is kicked at Bramley-Moore.

Everton have posted losses of around $500 million over the past four years and they need about a further $250 million to finish work on the new stadium.

There’s also another massive elephant in the room that needs to be addressed. I said earlier, that in the past two seasons Everton have survived a relegation dog-fight.

Although they won away at Brentford last week, I worry that come the end of the season, they may once again be gasping for survival.

And if they do go down, new stadium plans may have to go on hold, and Goodison Park will live to fight another day.

Theo Vietnamnews