Merseyside Police are satisfied with arrangements to schedule a Liverpool home match at the same time as the Grand National despite city mayor Joe Anderson labelling it “madness”.
The Reds’ Premier League game against Bournemouth, with a sell-out crowd of 54,000, will kick-off at 5.30pm on April 14 after being moved to accommodate BT Sport coverage.
That is just 15 minutes after an estimated 70,000 people will have watched the world’s greatest steeplechase being run at Aintree just four miles up the road.
It is the first time in 24 years Liverpool will play at home on Grand National day but police are happy for the two events to coincide.
“Merseyside Police is satisfied that the force has sufficient resources to provide a professional policing response to both the Grand National and the Liverpool v Bournemouth game,” said a force spokesperson.
“The staggered finish times of these events will assist with our policing operations, and will ensure that both race-goers and football fans can attend the respective events safely.”
However, Anderson believes it will create unnecessary pressure on local police.
“Have just seen that Liverpool v Bournemouth is to be played on Saturday 14th April at 17.30pm the same day as the Grand National need urgent meeting with @MerseyPolice they simply will not cope given the normal pressure of a Saturday. #madness,” Anderson wrote on Twitter.
When this was later put to the Everton-supporting mayor by one Twitter user that police had signed it off Anderson responded: “Maybe, but the costs of the overtime for police will fall on taxpayer and can the transport network cope? Seems a ridiculous decision to suit TV again.”