Liverpool's stadium plan progresses

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The Independent Football

Liverpool expect a major step forward on Friday in their plans to build a new stadium near to Anfield in Stanley Park. The city council's executive board will recommend leasing a section of the park for the stadium, and if the decision is rubber-stamped, the club could start building work early next year, with the first game possible at the beginning of the 2009-10 season.

The club will have to come up with £180m to build the stadium and they have until the end of the month to satisfy the council that that is possible. That will trigger £240m of public funding for the regeneration of north Liverpool, which would include improving the infrastructure around the new stadium site. A 999-year lease to the club for the land is being proposed.

The Manchester United manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, has criticised fans who formed FC United in the wake of the takeover by Malcolm Glazer.

"They seem to me to be promoting or projecting themselves a wee bit rather than saying, 'The club have made a decision, we'll stick by them.' It's more about them than us," Sir Alex said.