Discussions begin over Liverpool game
URGENT talks are under way to bring English Premier League giants Liverpool here for an end-of-season exhibition clash with Sydney FC next month at ANZ Stadium.
Though the deal is far from signed, with a host of logistical issues still to be worked through, the NSW Government and VenuesLive - the management arm of ANZ Stadium - are exploring the possibility of Liverpool travelling to face the A-League Premiers, probably in the week commencing May 29.
A deal has to be struck quickly to enable the game to have a sufficient selling window, and Liverpool are also believed to be exploring a second game in Asia for the same trip.
The WA government has also made a pitch to Liverpool, but it's thought that Sydney is by far the most likely venue - if the game goes ahead.
Liverpool have made two highly successful trips to Australia in the past four years, including a memorable sell-out of the MCG in 2013, and would expect to similarly pack out ANZ Stadium.
The Reds' last game of the season is at home to Middlesbrough on Sunday, May 21, and even if they flew the next day would not be in Sydney until Tuesday night at the latest.
There is an NRL game at ANZ on Friday May 26, and it's likely several days would be needed to prepare the pitch for such a showpiece event.
Liverpool has dropped out of the EPL title race this season, lying third after a 2-2 draw with Bournemouth early on Thursday morning, but still have huge pulling power with a large fan base in Australia.
A game between Socceroos and Liverpool "legends" early last year attracted 40,000 spectators to ANZ Stadium.