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Finance

Everton counters stadium cost talk

Everton Stadium pictured in December

Featured image credit: Everton FC

Everton has maintained the cost of its new stadium remains steady, addressing recent comments from the English Premier League football club’s owner, Farhad Moshiri, that the project will come with a £760m (€863m/$917.6m) price tag.

After breaking ground in August 2021 Everton Stadium, which will have a capacity of 52,888, is due to be completed for the 2024-25 season, replacing Goodison Park, the Merseyside club’s home since 1892.

The cost of the project has been set at around £505m according to the Liverpool Echo newspaper, citing sources close to the club, with Everton having moved last year to fix costs with construction partner Laing O’Rourke.

However, in an interview with radio broadcaster talkSPORT last month, Moshiri said Everton was “building a £760m stadium”. Everton has now sought to clarify the situation in response to a series of questions from its Fan Advisory Board (FAB).

“The cost of the new stadium has not risen by 50%,” Everton said. “The construction costs of the stadium have not changed. In April 2022, the club signed an agreement with Laing O’Rourke that provided cost certainty on the stadium.

“Following a recent interview with Mr Moshiri on talkSPORT a figure was referenced which considered the costs not just associated with the build of the stadium but also the planning and preparatory stages of the project, financing, ancillary and potential developments in the local area.

“As per the budget the club has in place for the project, there has been no change in the costs of constructing the stadium.”

Everton also commented on the financial structure of the project at Bramley-Moore Dock, stating that a ‘StadCo’ company will soon be established to own and operate the stadium as a subsidiary of the club.

The club statement added: “The new Everton Stadium is owned by ‘Everton Stadium Development Ltd’ which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Everton Football Club.

“Everton Stadium Development Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of Everton Football Club. The company sits within the Everton group of companies. Moving forward the club is putting place a ‘StadCo’ structure which is commonly seen in stadium financing.”

Moshiri again reiterated last month that the embattled club was not for sale, instead stating he was close to securing fresh investment for the new stadium project. Moshiri has been at the helm at Everton for almost seven years, during which time he has invested heavily both on and off the pitch. However, the stewardship of Everton has been repeatedly questioned and Moshiri and the Everton board have faced intensifying pressure from fans.