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As I life-long Evertonian I will always remember the first game I saw at Goodison Park. It was against West Ham on October 4th 1975 and I can still remember how green the pitch looked as I walked up the steps to look for somewhere to stand on the Gwladys Street. Since then I have been everywhere else in the ground apart from Lower Bullens but I can live with that. I am now back in the Gwladys Street - Upper this time with the whole stadium being seated and I can see me staying there for good. Apart from a slight need to lean forward when there is a corner to the left of the goal it is a perfect view.
Goodison Park is one of the few old, traditional grounds and there is an acceptance that changes have to be made. At one time it was one of the best grounds in the league and was chosen to host some of the World Cup games in 1966. It has a soul that is missing from the sterile grounds that are being thrown up but one day it will go and be missed by many. It still has some of the blue criss crossing between the Upper and Lower levels that made it so noticeable in the past but by and large a lot of it has been removed.
The first League game here was in September 1892 although the team was formed in 1878, and saw a 2-2 draw with Nottingham Forest. The attendance was 14,000 although all figures are given as 1000s and not exact numbers. It was a far cry from the record attendance in 1948 when the Derby attracted 78,299. The all seater stadium now has a much lower capacity of 40,200.
The ground is in the North of Liverpool and has four separate stands with various levels. The most recent to be built is the Park End. It is near to the away fans and is not the best place to be and certainly does not have the best atmosphere. That falls to the stands behind the other goal - The Upper and Lower Gwladys Street where most of the singing starts and the original Lower Gwladys Street was home to the Boys Pen where young lads were crammed in and kept away from the rest of the fans. Rumours of 30 year olds going in there as the price was lower are easy to believe.
The Upper and Lower Bullens are still very much in keeping with the old style as much of the building is still wooden. Facilities are not great but the view is largely unobstructed so the match is watched without the need to move around. Towards the Park End is the area for away fans and it is easy to see who is well supported depending on whether or not they take the allocation for both the Upper and Lower Stands.
The fourth side of the ground has three levels and is also the area where the players come onto the pitch. The Family Enclosure is where there are dads and lads but don't believe that this means it is safe and serene - the worst language can be heard there but maybe not from the middle were the boxes are. Here fans can arrive early, have a meal and then either stay inside in bad weather or step out in the sun to see the match. Next level up is the Main Stand where the Directors Box is located and many ex-players can be seen watching the Blues. Finally the Top Balcony. If you want to be freezing cold and see 6' players as ants then this is the place to go.
The ground is well provided for when it comes to public transport as there are bus stops near to 3 sides of the ground and Kirkdale train station is just a 15 minute walk away with the soccer bus bringing supporters to the ground. Taxis are always available to bring visitors from either John Lennon Airport or Lime Street Station.
The Grand Old Lady has so much history that it will be a wrench when she is finally torn down. I know the club needs to move on but I hope I don't have to see the day she is gone. The news of Dixie Deans record 60 goals a season and then memories of the more recent record of Bob Latchfords 30 league goals in a season. The relief at not being relegated against Wimbledon on May 7th 1994 and on other occasions the sorrow of hearing that two Goodison heroes had died at the match - Dixie Dean on March 1st 1980 at a Derby game and Harry Catterick on March 9th 1985 against Ipswich Town.
I can't think how many times Z Cars has blasted around the ground as the players run out but whenever it happens it either brings a smile to my face or a tear to my eye.
Goodison Park, is one of the oldest stadiums in english football and is home to Everton FC. The stadium has bagfuls of charm and character. On a matchday the stadium is often full and has a capacity of around 40,000. The atmosphere at goodision is electric and often when there you feel like you have stepped back in time, to the glory days of english football. The main problem with goodision is its facilties haven't been updated. The concourses are very old, the toilets are horrendous as is the half time catering. Many of the seats in goodision have obstructed view, with pillars that hold up the stands blocking the view of many spectators. Parking for the ground is also difficult, with many forced to park on the road. Despite the problems, there isnt a better place to be on a saturday afternoon in the whole world. Goodision is superior to many of the modern soulless stadiums all with a similar design.
So first and formeost I am an Evertonian of more than thirty years who has been attending games here for most of that time, so what foloows will inevitably have a certaine blue tinted view. Firstly a little bit of history.
Goodison Park located in Walton, is the home of Everton F.C. and has been since 1892 when something happened regarding our old home. But that's not important. Originally the site was known as Mere Green field but following construction was named Goodison Park after the road which ran the length of the site, Goodison Road. Officially opened on the 24th August 1892, it is preceded only by Ibrox as the first purpose built stadium in Britain. Another connection with Rangers is the criss-cross design that adorns the Bullens Road stand. This can also be sees at Ibrox, mainly because that stand and Ibrox were both designed by Scottish architect Archibald Leach. Over the decades Goodison was at the forefront of stadium technology. The first undersoil heating was installed here, and the first match played under lights was again at Goodison. Since the 1970s however developments have stagnated. Aside from the new Park End stand completed in 1994 there have been no developments of note, save for cosmetic improvements here and there.
So thats the history but today Goodison is at time of writing a 40,157 all seater stadium. If fans of other teams are asked to describe it, their responses will normally fall into one of two categories. Either an absolute disgrace that is unsafe and should be pulled down or a traditional old ground. Perhaps another way of classifying the answers is that there are people who expect to be comforted while they are being entertained and then there are those who just want to watch a football match.
The four stands surrounding the pitch each have their own advatages and disadvantages. The newest and at the moment my seat is the Park End or to give it it's more common name, the 'Nark End'. Situated at the south end of the ground, it boasts all the modern trappings of a football stand post-Taylor report. Leg-room, wide concourses and conveniences down stairs. However, as you can tell from the moniker it has gained, those who usually frequent it are not the most pleasant. Anymistake from a poor Hibbert cross to a misplaced Osman pass is seized on and the helpful Park End crowd will remind the relevant player of this mistake. Repeatedly. All season long. The fans here are also the most knowledgeable. Witness their ability to know exactly what score a match will finish, because most will leave five to ten minutes before full time. Genius.
Next the Main Stand comprising three tiers. At the lower level, the Family Enclosure. Now this was my previous seat. Mostly at ground level, the views aren't brilliant but you gets what you pay for. Now if the name conjures up images of smiling dads and their fathers enjoying a pleasant Saturday (or Sunday or Monday or whenever Sky lets us play!!!) then forget it. This section is without doubt the most hate filled, abusive ill-mannered place on Earth. Visiting fullbacks have been seen to ignore the instructions of their manager and refuse to take thrown ins and corners just to avoid the abuse.
The Main Stand sits above this and if your name isn't Bill Kenwright avoid. You see his seat in the middle of the stand right at the front of the Director's Box offers a magnificent panoramic view of the pitch. For the rest of the stand however, the term is 'obstructed View'. Posts, lots and lots of posts. And the seats. Made of a wood so hard, that rumour has it they were once part of an 18th Century royal Naval ship that fought at Trafalgar.
The third Tier is the Top Bacony. Two things you need to know about this. Firstly, when you go up there, inevitably some one will say 'I can see my house from here.' Last bloke to say that was from Scotland. Secondly, it's cold. In the middle of August, a scorching hot Summers day, some idiot will turn up in shorts. And end up losing most toes to frostbite. Although the view is spectacular, just watch out for passing jumbo jets.
The Gwladys Street comprises Upper, Lower and Terrace. Upper gives you a good view, lower not so much, but the Terrace is certainly the best place to enjoy the atmosphere. The polar opposite to the Park End usually reflecting the amount of booze drank by it's occupiers (or spilt over someone's head if we score) it is here that the Limbs AOTS moments first came to prominence. i.e last minute winners, limbs everywhere, everybody hugging. Good fun.
Opposite the Main Stand is the Bullens Road. The oldest of the four stands and unfortunately it shows. Wooden flooring, posts everywhere again, although not as many as the Main Satand which was built fifty years later. It is here that the away fans are housed, in the far corner nearest the Nark End. Well someone has to sit next to them. The Lower Bullens has the distinction of being the only stand filmed in widescreen. Should the ball be kicked above a height of twenty foot, you have the added bonus of trying to figure out where it's going to come down. Sort of like a live action version of spot the ball. At no extra cost.
Situated two miles north of Liverpool City Centre, Kirkdale is your nearest station and Lime Street is your nearest mainline station. Various bus services run from the city centre, speak to info desk in queens square for details.. If your driving there are two major car parks, one on Priory Road by the sports centre and the other is the School. Both are signposted. There is the option of leaving your car on the main road, but I wouldn't.
Ticket prices are amongst the cheapest in the premiership. Here are the current prices but the website www.evertonfc.com for upto date info:
ADULT - UNDER 16 - OVER 65
£35.00 - £18.00 - N/A
£34.00 - £18.00 - £22.00
£34.00 - £18.00 - £22.00
£32.00 - £16.00 - £20.00
£29.00 - £14.00 - £20.00
£32.00 - £16.00 - £20.00
£32.00 - £16.00 - £20.00
£29.00 - £16.00 - £20.00
£29.00 - £16.00 - £20.00
And that's it. Goodison is home for me. There are better looking grounds definitely. And as for atmosphere, maybe we do lack the showbiz element or neighbours in red seem to revel in. But for me, a midweek game under floodlights, middle of winter and a riled up Goodison can't be beaten. I suppose it comes down to the earlier point of what you want. Is it about the football or is it a pastime. Goodison Park. Built for football. Nothing else.
***Please do not comment or rate because of the team you support; actually read the review first!***
The first ever purpose built football stadium lies at the heart of a mass of housing. This has been the home of Everton f.c. since 1892. The four stands that were once representing architectural revolution, now left behind by newer stadia. This famous old ground lies just 3/4 of a mile away from the home of Liverpool f.c; anfield. Only stanley park separates the two clubs and their similarly out dated stadia, yet both remain at the forefront of English football.
I can assure you all, however, that although the stands may be dated, the atmosphere at the ground has not been left behind. The old saying that they just don't make them like they used to would be well utilised here. Sure you may get 70,000 in a brand new bowl, but it's undoubted most new stadium's do not carry the vocals the way older ones do. Goodison park was built for acoustics and carries the noise fantastically around it. 'The grand ole lady' as she is affectionately known, provides the backdrop for a 12th man when needed. It is without doubt, that on some occasions, you may be forgiven for forgetting the disadvantages of staying at goodison park. I have been lucky enough to witness games where the pouring of emotiong creates an electric buzz that undoubtedly reaches the players on the pitch; and the amazingly close proximity of the players to the fans makes it all the better.
So there are four sides to this ground, they are the park end, the gwladys street, the bullens road and the main stand.
Starting with the park end, this lies behind one of the goals, and is the most recent of the stands to be made all seated. Remaining as a terrace following the introduction of all steated grounds being made compulsory, this was only opened for big games. This was only temporary as it was planned to rebuild the stand with seats. This came about in 1994, and there is often disappointment expressed that the single tiered stand was built with a capacity of 6,000. The stand could have been take a fair few yards back (where housing used to lie but was bought and demolished by the club), and in this way a massive tier could have overshadowed the goal. Sitting in the park end it's clear that this is the most recent stand a there are no restricted views. This is named the park end as the outside face stanley park.
Opposite the park end is the gwladys street, with lies behind the other goal. This is a two tiered stand and is where I have a season ticket; therefore this is my favourite part of the ground! The lower and upper gwladys both have restricted views, not least because of the poles that may obstruct some views, but also because if you sit quite far back the overhang will mean you can't see when the ball goes over head height. The gwladys street houses everton's most voiciferous fans, hence why it's traditional for us to kick towards that end in the second half. The lower gwladys now houses a disable enclosure raised a few rows back.
The remaining two stands lie opposite each other. The bullens road is two tiered, and below the lower bullens lies the paddock. At the corner closest to the park end the away fans are seated. The bullens has a lot of restricted views, but there are none in the paddock. Thos who sit here usually say they like the banter that they can have with the close proximity of away fans.
The final stand is the largest one. The main stand is three tiered. The top balcony is very high and quite steep. The top balcony and middle tier both house resticted views mainly because of the large poles that run down to hold the roof up. The very bottom tier is the family encolsure, and regulations have become more strict recently; it now really is somehwere you wouldn't want to be unless you had kids.
Goodison Park was once one of the shining lights in the world of football stadia. Unfortunately, even this die-hard Evertonian can see that this is a ground that has had its day. Undoubtedly filled with history Goodison Park leaves me with a sad feeling of nostalgia. I grew up five minutes from the ground and saw during the nineties Everton go through so tumultuous times nearly being relegated on numerous occasions. The euphoria of the 1994 game relegation saving win against Wimbledon was something I will never forget and other fans will point to 1985's Bayern Munich game. However, the ground itself is fast becoming a shadow of what it used to be as seemingly every club emerges with a fancy new stadium that far surpasses ours.
Goodison Park situated near Stanley Park, right in the centre of Liverpool. In fact, it is in spitting distance from local rivals Liverpool. The ground was built in 1892 so is well over a century old and unfortunately, this is starting to show in a big way. Despite being repainted and rebuilt in several areas, the ground is now at a standstill with the last major development being "The Park End" in 1994. Situated slap bang in the middle of a tight residential area, the chance of redevelopment is highly unlikeable and deemed impossible by many architects. Despite a "Keep Everton In Our City" campaign being fought, it is increasingly likely that Everton will have to move from their spiritual home to a proposed joint venture with Tesco in Kirkby. I find the KEIOC campaign quite bizarre as most scousers think of Kirkby as Liverpool. It has an L postcode and for me Kirkby is as scouse as it gets! However, this has led to proposals being sent for Government consultation which has held up the proposed move scheduled for 2011. For me this ground move is essential but only time will tell if we have another failed "Kings Dock" situation.
The reasons I feel the ground move are essential are simple enough. As I have mentioned the stadium is woefully old fashioned. Apart from the more corporate looking "Park End" there is an undoubted run down feel to Goodison that cannot be ignored. Outside looks okay and from a birds eye view it remains very impressive but endless licks of paint are deceiving. Inside is lacking in facilities and is one of few Premier league grounds that still have obstructed views. As someone who has suffered the obstructed view let me say it is not worth a discount. A great steel pillar in front of you is not preferable to watching Gosling curl a shot past a beleagured Reina!
Toilet facilities are also shoddy at best and is very much like peeing against a wall outside with thousands of other people in attendence. The food and drink is standard pie and pint stuff which is all very traditional but there is a lack of merchandise inside the ground although the impressive club shop is very close by. Travelling to and from the ground has always been an issue and driving is pretty much a no go as Liverpool comes to a stand still. Many people choose to dump their cars in Bootle and walk in whereas the rail links remain the major route for many with a mere fifteen minute walk to the ground.
Being so central, Goodison still does have one good thing about it and that is how close it is to shops and pubs so getting a pre-match drink and something to eat is never a problem. Getting back inside the ground the vocal fans of "The Gwladys Street" still give the ground an impressive atmosphere on match days but I do feel they are let down by other areas which are far quieter. Rarely do cries of Everton reverbrate around the whole ground and again this is something a new stadium may accomplish by getting away from the history of "Gwladys Street" being the only area that sings.
From a nostalgic point of view I hate the idea of moving from Goodison. There is something intimidating about a club that has a Church in the corner for backup and the memories every fan has will be difficult to replace. However, there is no getting away from the fact that Goodison has been surpassed by lesser known teams such as Sunderland in terms of facilities and I think as fans we have to start thinking of the ground as a shell that is not the sum total of Everton or it's fans. A 40,000 capacity is not enough for a team pushing to be top four and this is why for me I think I have to say goodbye to a ground I love and that holds a special place in my heart. Here is hoping history can in Kirkby as it has been here.
'Goodison Park' is the home of Everton Football club who play in the English Premier League. The stadium is situated in the city of Liverpool, was first built in 1892 and today has an all seated capacity of 40,569. It is actually one of the oldest football stadiums in the world believe it or not and was the first purpose built football stadium in England. The stadium has changed a fair bit from when it was first built, notably the change from standing to seating, this was completed in 1994 and took the overall capacity to just over 40,000.
Looking around the stadium it is not one of the best and not one of the worst, its somewhere in the middle. It is made up of four completely separate stands, all of which are completely different in design, making the stadium look a bit untidy, but also adding character and charm. The stands are, Bullens Road (8067), Gwladys Street End (10155), The Park End (6000) and the main stand (16347). The ground hasn't been redeveloped in a while since the new Park End in 1994, a single tiered stand giving spectators a better view of the pitch as there are no pillars. It is possible to expand the ground beyond the current capacity, but due to the age of the stadium and the amount of work this would take Everton are looking to relocate.
The pitch is one of the largest in the premier league, 112 by 78 yards and it is in great condition considering the amount of rain they have in the North West.
I have only ever been to 'Goodison' once and this was to see Everton play Bolton, as my cousin and uncle live in Liverpool and are Evertonians. I wasn't that impressed by the stadium I have to say, although there was a great atmosphere amongst the supporters. In comparison to the modern stadiums it did look a bit dated and this was about 8 years ago! I think they will definitely be moving soon, the ground is simply too old and too small for the modern game.
Thanks for reading.
Ok- firstly I admit bias, I am an Evertonian. In fact I have just some back from a slaughtering 2-0 defeat at Goodison by Manchester United today!! History As a bit of history Everton was a founder member of the football league in 1888, they have been first division champions 9 times, runners up 7 times, second division champions in 1930/31 and runners up 1953/54. They've won the FA cup 5 times, been runners up 7 times. They've won the Charity shield 9 times. They've won the European Cup Winners Cup too. So we are talking a good team here with a solid history despite the cracks from other team supporters. Everton have been at Goodison Park since 1892- almost all of their history. So it is bound to be a sad day when they move from the ground. Times of difficulty Walter Smith is doing a good job lifting the team in times of difficulty (we have numerous injurys at present including Pistone last week at Elland Road). But at last it looks like we won't be near relegation this season despite current form. There are a consistant 38,000 plus supporters at the ground every game and so the argument goes that we should get another ground because Goodison Park is near full capacity and not everyone can get hold of a ticket. And I take on the point that they need more toilets, the food is not great (even in the director's box the food is questionable), they need more parking etc etc. Goodison is used for little else other than the odd wedding or corporate function ontop of the team play. I am sure a new ground in a better location supported by a professional feasibility study would be the way ahead. Hopefully the ground can then be used for other sporting events and throw in a few decent restaurants, shop, trophy room, concerts etc then they should make the proposition all the more viable. Money Yep money is always the big issue. To build a ground will cost millions and I am sure much
as been spent already on advising the club on the move. I believe we should be reinvesting money sensibly into players and building the team back to how it was at its best. Everton are only just breaking into profit after years of debt. I am sure their accountants would agree that you should build a business before reinvesting without thought. And sensibly this is what they are doing. No money we have been told will be taken away from Smith to build the team because of this venture forward. I am sure much thought has gone into the decision to move and the current thoughts on the matter have been a relocation to the Kings Dock near the Albert Dock. Certainly this is what is being told to the press. Kings Dock - the suggested new ground Firstly the space is good- a stadium for say 55,000 people with cars etc will fit easily although it will be a shame loose all the free parking available for shoppers and businesses on the land. And putting a stadium so close to the city centre is going to cause some difficulties at first bacause of this. On a Wednesday evening and Saturday businesses are going to be struggling to get their staff to work. But this is being looked at in plans to reorganise the town temporarily closing roads etc- bound to be havoc until the city centre gets used to it though which will happen. The only way forward is to embrace change, Liverpool City Council are constantly checking that the infrastructure will be fine. The flats & houses over looking the docks will go flying down from £250k to a far lesser price (will they be compensated??). The general public are not happy at all in the area mostly due to this point and the general infrastructure issues. I think this is down to nerves though. Even a Liverpool fan would agree (maybe!) that to put a large top of the range stadium in the centre of Liverpool will breath life and money into an area that is badly needed. The project has been going for several years no
w and there are many further hurdles and years to go. I say shout now if you feel like you need your voice heard because this move is carrying the largest momentum I have see of late on the point of moving. But despite all the issues- and let's face it there is always opposition, the new ground will give Everton the chance to stage bigger games and generate future money. I say good luck and let us hope it helps Everton FC out with it's finances. A good project planned well has to be the key and I wish them all the best with it. Updates on the development can be found on the Everton website: http://www.evertonfc.com I wonder whether they will call it Goodison Park II...
In it's day Goodison park was the finest stadium in the country. If anybody has visited the ground in recent years they will quickly come to the conclusion that it is time for Everton to move on in order to regain their position at the forefront of english football. The ground still attracts high attendences so therefore can generate great atmospheres. Unfortunately you have to have a decent side too, so unless we move to the proposed new kings dock stadium we will remain in the doldrums, with the bank manager on our backs
Goodison Park home of Everton is located on one side of Stanley Park (many consider Stanley Park to be the home of football), diagonally opposite that of our main rivals Liverpool by a short distance of 500 metres. The ground was built in the early fifties and was meant to be a showcase stadium, this was certainly the case. Goodison was the first pitch in the world to have undersoil heating, with a seating capacity of 40,000 this was one of the most impressive stadiums around anywhere in the world for it's time. Goodison was used in the World Cup in 1966 and through it's years it has witnessed many fine events, most notably those of Everton beating Liverpool. However Goodison is now becoming aged and doesn't hold the sort of capacity which a team like Everton could attract week in week out, as there is so much history involved with Goodison there is only one solution and that is to build a new stadium where the old one stands.
Being a liverpool supporter, you would have to pay me to make me step inside the gates of goodison park other than to see Liverpool play. I have only been there once in october of last year (yes, liverpool where playing). I can honestly say that it is one of the worst stadiums i have ever been to. The facilities there where terrible. The toilets were a disgrace, the food was inedible. Now onto the actual stadium. From outside, you can tell that this stadium is in need of renovation. It looks like something you would see in war photos. Inside it is no better. To get to my seat i had to walk up a scarily steep flight or two of stairs, and when i finally got up there, i nearly had a heart attack. I don't suffere from vertigo, but one slip of the foot and you could drop right down to ground level. The atmosphere there was terrible too. You would think that with it being their cup final that the atmosphere would be like a real cup final, but it was far from it. I went to the Liverpool vs. Hull match earlier this season, and i can honestly say that there was a better atmosphere at that match. When everton released plans to re-devolop Goddison Park, or to move to another stadium, i thought that they would be thinking along the lines of a nice little 30,000 seater like Pride Park. But no. Everton want to build a 55,000 super stadium with retractable roof and pitch. Come on, be serious! Everton only manage to fill their 38,000 seater stadium once, maybe tow times a season. There is NO waiting list for a season ticket, the team is going nowhere. Why do they deserve a 55,000 seater stadium when they can't even fill out there 38,000 one, and when their is no demand for their tickets. I for one am all for this new stadium, as it will knock Everton fans back into reality, and hopefully, it will knock everton out of the football league and into bankrupcy.