Liverpool Mayor, Joe Anderson, has admitted that Everton are still exploring funding avenues for their proposed new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock.
The club have been in talks with the Mayor and Liverpool City Council over a loan vehicle that would see LCC borrow £280m from the public sector at a lower rate than the club is likely to find elsewhere and then be paid back by Everton over a period of 25 years.
Anderson is highly keen on the scheme because the city stands to make £7m a year from the securitised arrangement but partisan criticism and political opposition to the deal mean there are no guarantees it would be ratified by the Council.
Speaking to the All Together Now podcast, Anderson said:
"We have had 18 months of negotiations with Everton, with Queens Counsel, financial institutions and city officers, and we have come to a period where we have got a deal that we think we can offer to them and if they like it then they will take the deal and move on.
"We are not there yet because Everton want to make sure that they get the best deal; they are talking to other people. So, if they say no Liverpool City Council, we might get a better deal from somewhere else, then we will.
"But from our point of view — and what I have promised — I will do is to work with Everton Football Club to try and make this project happen."
"When you take the politics out of it, it is the right thing to do. If they want to use us - they may well turn around and say no, but if they want to use us, I think absolutely yes we should."If we can be helpful, then we will be but we can always not be used and the club can move forward without us, developing Bramley Moore, then that is good too because, when you look at this site, we are talking about new businesses, restaurants, hotels, apartments, all being built on the site and that will bring in millions to the city — so it is a win-win for us. "I would be hugely disappointed [if it doesn't come off]. The frustrating thing for me is when you hear people who are playing politics, whether that be the Liberal Democrats of the extreme left."
"They don't understand that from my point of view, we have lost 58% of our funding and I need every penny. If it forces Everton to go elsewhere, then I will be hugely disappointed, because we will have lost £7 million [a year]."
Quotes sourced from Liverpool Echo