Liverpool could still yet win the Premier League at bitter rivals Everton as Merseyside Police claim they have ‘no objections’ to Anfield or Goodison Park hosting fixtures
- Merseyside Police have ‘no objections’ to Liverpool and Everton playing at home
- Police have identified six ‘high risk’ PL games that could be at neutral venues
- There are concerns fans could gather near grounds and breach lockdown rules
- Liverpool’s matches are of particular concern given they will win the title soon
Plans to play Premier League games at neutral venues have been thrown into chaos as Merseyside Police have said they have ‘no objections’ to Liverpool and Everton playing at their home stadiums.
This is despite head of football in the UK, Mark Roberts, saying on Friday that he believes a ‘small number’ of the 92 outstanding Premier League games should be held in neutral venues – one of which is believed to be the Merseyside derby.
The Reds could now win their first top-flight title in 30 years at their arch rivals Everton’s home ground Goodison Park.
A flare is thrown onto the pitch as Liverpool’s Sadio Mane celebrates at Goodison Park in 2016
Manchester City v Liverpool
Manchester City v Newcastle
Manchester United v Sheffield United
Newcastle v Liverpool
Everton v Liverpool
Liverpool’s title-winning game
Other games that could be moved include:
Tottenham v West Ham; Liverpool vs Crystal Palace; West Ham v Chelsea, Liverpool v Aston Villa; Crystal Palace v Chelsea; Liverpool v Burnley; Tottenham v Arsenal; Liverpool v Chelsea; Crystal Palace v Tottenham
Merseyside Police’s Assistant Chief Constable Rob Carden, said: ‘Merseyside Police is ready to provide whatever policing is required of us in relation to games being played at our Premier League stadia once the season restarts.
‘In relation to crime and disorder we have no objections to any of the Everton or Liverpool home fixtures being played at their respective grounds. We have a good working relationship with both clubs, and their fan groups, and are content that we can work together in advance of the restart of the season.
‘Decisions in relation to public health risk are made by the Government and Public Health England and ultimately the final decision rests with the Safety Advisory Group, which is chaired by Liverpool City Council in line with the decisions made nationally in relation to sporting events.’
Three games involving Liverpool will be moved to a neutral venue, Sportsmail understands, including the Merseyside derby and their likely title-winning game, though there is no possibility of Jurgen Klopp and Carlo Ancelotti’s sides meeting in Manchester.
There is also a concern about two Newcastle games.
The full list of games police hold concerns over are: Manchester City v Liverpool, Manchester City v Newcastle, Manchester United v Sheffield United, Newcastle v Liverpool, Everton v Liverpool and the game which takes Liverpool to the title.
Jurgen Klopp’s side could win their first top-flight title in 30 years at their rivals home ground
As it stands the Reds only need to win two of their remaining nine games to win the league but should Manchester City lose to Arsenal before the Reds play Everton, then Jurgen Klopp’s side can win the league at Goodison Park.
At Thursday’s Premier League meeting 12 games were mentioned as potentially being moved to neutral venues – including a series of London derbies, as revealed by Sportsmail. The clubs involved still expect these matches to be moved, too.
The six fixtures of main concerns have been identified after individual forces were asked which games concerned them.
As yet, there are no fixtures relating to relegation-threatened sides, which could avoid the row over neutral venues which saw the bottom six insist that they wanted to retain home advantage.
But Sportsmail understands that additional relegation fixtures could be added if that aspect of the resumed season creates crunch matches in which large numbers are likely to gather.
The Reds face Everton in their first game back on June 17 after the league was suspended
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