'April start' for new Liverpool stadium, says council
Work on the new stadium could start in April 2010
Work on Liverpool's new stadium in Stanley Park could begin as early as April 2010, the leader of Liverpool City Council has told the BBC.
Warren Bradley said Liverpool have told the council that they are "very close now to securing the finances".
He added it would be "in April that hopefully, fingers crossed, we'll see some activity on Stanley Park".
Bradley also revealed the council would hold talks with Everton about their plans for a new stadium on 11 January.
The government rejected Everton's plans for a 50,000-seater stadium in Kirkby, with Liverpool City Council one of the opponents of the plan.
Development of Liverpool's proposed new ground has been a casualty of the unstable global financial situation.
What they've said is they'll secure the finances in the first quarter, so that's between January and March
Council leader Warren Bradley
Construction on the new site in Stanley Park, which is next to Anfield and has a planned 60,000 capacity, was frozen in August 2008 after preliminary work because of the financial conditions.
But, in September, Liverpool co-owner Tom Hicks insisted that it would go ahead once the financial situation improved. And Liverpool City Council leader Bradley says that the club is now confident of securing the required cash in the first three months of 2010.
"What they've said is they'll secure the finances in the first quarter, so that's between January and March," he told BBC Radio Merseyside.
He added that work on Liverpool's new stadium, which is part of England's proposed 2018 World Cup bid, could then begin in April.
"We've been pressing Liverpool Football Club to ensure that they deliver the stadium and if they're not going to deliver it, to come clean with the council so we can look at other options," said Bradley.
"Liverpool Football Club have come back to us and said they're very close now to securing the finances and they want to move on as quickly as possible, not only for the World Cup bid but also for Liverpool Football Club, who see a new stadium as being the heart of the business plan."
Bradley added that talks with Liverpool's city rivals Everton to help them secure a new ground would take place early in 2010.
"We have got a meeting with Everton where we will put all our cards on the table," he said.
"I will be there as will be council chief executive Colin Hilton and executive director of regeneration John Kelly. We want to make sure that we can facilitate things for Everton."
This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.