Liverpool’s Dock Road is more gorgeous than its name would imply. The city’s rich maritime history is evident in everything from the redbrick warehouses to the names of the former shipyards, which include “Trafalgar,” “Victoria,” and “Nelson,” etched into the sturdy granite dock wall.
There’s the moving simplicity of the turquoise plaque marking the 150th anniversary of Ireland’s Great Famine. ‘Through these gates passed most of the 1,300,000 Irish migrants.’
The Albert Dock, once thriving with pubs, has been fading away on Dock Road since 1989.
However, the construction of a football stadium for Everton Football Club is a significant boost to Liverpool’s regeneration, reducing speculative transfer spending and promoting financial sustainability.
That’s why, when UEFA set up their own Financial Fair Play system, bricks and mortar spend was not counted. It meant that Manchester City could throw £200million Abu Dhabi cash at building one the world’s most impressive training facilities. None of it was part of the FFP calculation.
That training facility became a lucrative commercial opportunity – part of City’s groundbreaking £35million sponsorship deal with Etihad, which spawned what has become known as the ‘Etihad Campus.’ It also became a way of persuading young players to join City, rather than Manchester United.
The alleged artificial inflation of the Etihad sponsorship deal is central to the Premier League’s 115 charges against City, over breaches of sustainability rules.
The investigation began five years ago and there’s still not sign of the kind of report that Everton have been hit with. That’s what the world’s most expensive lawyers buy you. City deny the charges.
Everton were given the very distinct impression that the cost of interest on loans to build their Bramley Moore Dock Stadium would be excluded from sustainability considerations, just like City’s.
They argued that six other clubs had been able to keep them out of the financial calculation and that this was an investment in the long-term future of a club and its city.