Liverpool are targeting October’s Merseyside derby for the phased opening of the new £80 million Anfield Road stand having resumed its construction.

The previous constructors, the Buckingham Group, have appointed administrators following the company’s bankruptcy.
That has enabled Liverpool to appoint another firm – Rayner Rowen Construction – along with a number of other contractors to put the finishing touches to the project.

The enforced delay means forthcoming Liverpool home fixtures must still be played with a reduced capacity as the top tier remains closed, but the club is now optimistic the phased opening will begin during the Merseyside derby on October 21.

That match must still be played below full capacity, however, with the full completion date having been put back.
Once complete, the stadium attendance will expand to 61,000.

It was initially anticipated the stand would be complete in time for the start of the current Premier League season. The Merseyside club requested the league arrange for Liverpool’s first match of the season to be away to extend the time available for completion.

Then Liverpool announced in July that the timetable had been pushed back ‘until October’ in order to complete the top tier of the structure, before Buckingham announced they could no longer continue and work was temporarily halted.

“Our thoughts are with all those employees and contractors who face uncertainty at this time,” read a club statement.

“Working with Rayner Rowen Construction, we will seek to engage as many of Buckingham’s existing sub-contractors going forward as we are reasonably able to.

“Everyone at LFC is looking forward to getting the stand completed and fully open and we are doing everything possible to make sure that happens as quickly and safely as possible.”

The statement added: “Work will begin now to fully assess the construction programme and Rayner Rowen will work swiftly with our internal team to produce a revised project completion programme which will give us certainty on capacity and phasing.

“Meantime some workers have returned to the site to continue some immediate works.”