Liverpool's Anfield Stadium to host Rugby League finale
In an official statement, The Rugby Football League (RFL) has announced that the final of this year’s Four Nations national team tournament will take place at Anfield, the home of English Premier League football club Liverpool.
The 2016 competition, which is due to run from October 28 through to the final on November 20, will feature host England, as well as Scotland, New Zealand and Australia.
Anfield has staged just three rugby league games in its history, the most recent being an English Super League club match between St Helens and Castleford in 1997. The stadium also played host to the 1989 Charity Shield between English teams Widnes and Wigan, as well as Wigan’s World Club Challenge game against Australian team Penrith in 1991.
The remaining games at this year’s Four Nations will take place at other venues across England. Coventry’s Ricoh Arena, home of League One football club Coventry City and Premiership rugby union team Wasps, will host a rugby league game for the first time, with England scheduled to play Scotland on November 5.
Rugby league will also return to the Olympic Stadium in London with England against Australia on November 13. The Olympic Stadium, which, from the 2016-17 season, will be the home of Premier League football club West Ham United, staged its first rugby league game in November last year when New Zealand beat England 9-2 in an International Series match.
The KC Lightstream Stadium in Hull will host the first match of the Four Nations, with Australia facing Scotland on October 28, before England plays New Zealand at the John Smith’s Stadium in Huddersfield on the following day. The remaining game between New Zealand and Scotland will take place at the Zebra Claims Stadium in Workington on November 11.
Jon Dutton, tournament director for the Four Nations, said: “We are delighted with the venues selected for the 2016 Four Nations and we are sure that the tournament will deliver compelling and memorable action on the field. Anfield is an iconic sporting venue and I am certain that all teams will be determined to reach the final to play in front of what will be a very special atmosphere.”
The Four Nations is regarded as the second biggest international rugby league competition, with Australia and New Zealand having co-hosted its last edition in 2014.