News that Liverpool will be allowed face local rivals Everton at Goodison park when the two sides resume play on Sunday, June 21st, was expected, but confirmation from the Ground Safety Advisory Group remains a positive update.
The local advisory group, having consulted with the local police, clubs, and supporters groups, has today made official their recommendation that all remaining games this season be played as planned at the two teams’ home stadiums.
“We are satisfied that the outstanding fixtures for the 2019-20 Premier League season can be safely and securely played at both Goodison Park and Anfield,” Liverpool deputy mayor and GSAG chair Wendy Simon said of the group’s decision.
The next stage will be for modified safety certificates to be issued to the two clubs by the city to allow the games to go ahead behind closed doors, which should once and for all end talk of the derby having to be held outside of Liverpool.
Rather bizarrely, in recent days Southampton, about as far as one can get from Liverpool if searching for a Premier League stadium to stage a match at, had emerged as a potential option should the clubs not be cleared to play at Goodison.
“The Spirit of Shankly and the Blue Union welcome the news that games are to be played on Merseyside,” read a joint statement from the two clubs’ supporter groups following the announcement of the GSAG’s home grounds decision today.
“Building on the magnificent community work both sets of fans have done throughout this pandemic, we are confident that supporters of these two great clubs will respect safety advice about avoiding visiting stadia where 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.”