Melwood is Liverpool Football Clubs training ground. It is based in the West Derby area of Liverpool and has been their home since the fifties. It has recently been transformed to make it more up to date.
The ground previously belonged to St Francis Xaviours, a local school. The area was used as a playing field for the school and two of the priests who taught at the school also spent hours helping the young boys play football. Those two priests were know as Father Melling and Father Woodlock. As a way of remembering the two priests' hard work the ground was named after a combination of the two names. And thus Melwood was named.
The picture at the bottom of this piece shows the training ground in the fifties with the original wooden pavillion. In those days the club's player would report too Anfield before being coached down to Melwood for training before returning for showers and lunch afterwards.
The facilities evolved a little over time and the original wooden pavillion was changed to a brick one but even this building eventually proved less than adequate in todays modern world of training facilities. At the end of the 1999-00 the club finally decided that new facilities would be required rather than trying to re-build yet again.
In January 2001 the club started work on the Millennium Pavillion which would be ultra modern for players and coaches alike. The new area would house everything needed for the players to undergo everything required at one complex.
The complex comprises a Press Room, staff offices for manager and coaches alike, changing facilities for not only the home side players but also for referees and opposing teams in the event of behind closed doors matches. In terms of the injured players they can recuperate in a small hydrotherapy pool as well as a major physiotheraphy room. A large gymnasium is also housed in the complex for both recuperating players as well as those looking to build up muscle. Michael Owen for example has built up his hamstring muscles using the very gym and since using it has become a stronger player.
Obviously the complex isn't all about training and recuperating with lounge areas for the players to relax after training and obviously to sign the numerous autograph requests from charities. At one side of the comples there is also a small covered area where players will often traing away from the elements on a synthetic surface.
Although the club don't encourage fans to come down they have put in a small covered area for spectators although these are generally invited down especially.
Years ago the real hub of the Liverpool engine was the Anfield Bootroom but these days it's at Melwood and the coaching staff have regular meetings in the complex offices.Training these days starts early in the morning with players arriving around 9. The players go through a morning session and are also required to turn in for an evening session these days too.
Getting to Melwood
Liverpool FC Training Ground, Melwood Drive, West Derby, Liverpool L12 8SV
In order to travel to the training ground you should get the number 12 or 13 bus from the City centre towards Stockbridge Village. Their is a bus stop by the training ground. The buses run regularly throughout the day.