I was in a bar the other night and overheard a couple of guys talking about how disastrous it would be if Chelsea failed to qualify for the Champions League. As I was pondering this thought I began to contemplate something equally as disastrous; what if Liverpool didn’t qualify either?
Granted Liverpool haven’t qualified for the Champions League for the last three seasons, but there is always expectation on Merseyside that Liverpool will qualify the next year and missing out for the last few years hasn’t dampened the fans enthusiasm. The problem is that there are currently four teams in the Premier League that are consistently better than Liverpool at the minute and the reds haven’t shown enough progress this year to be considered a Champions League team.
So where does this leave Liverpool?
The harsh truth is that it leaves them desperately short of much needed revenue required to overhaul the team and tie current players down to long term contracts. The lack of revenue gained from the Champions League is going to be a huge problem for Liverpool as they are likely to miss out on approximately $30 million that would be earned from progression, image rights and TV revenue. Lack of revenue is going to play a key factor in how much Brendan Rodgers has to spend this summer and with FSG wanting to limit exorbitant spending it can only mean that Liverpool will have to go shopping at K-Mart this year instead of Macy’s.
Another problem Liverpool could face is that they could find themselves trapped in a vicious circle of not having the players to qualify for the Champions League and unfortunately because they haven’t qualified for the competition previously the funds aren’t there to buy the players in the first place.
It makes grim reading for Liverpool fans especially when they are barely managing to compete in the Champions League’s little sister, the Europa League. The Europa League is a total waste of time in my opinion. 64 generally second rate teams compete for a trophy that, even if it’s won, is worth just $3 million in revenue and only $200,000 per game. The Champions League, by comparison is worth $10 million if it’s won, $8.6 million per team and a $1 million win bonus per game.
It’s clear which tournament is more beneficial and which tournament Liverpool fans would want to be in. Unfortunately, with the financial restrictions imposed on them from missing out on the Champions League, Liverpool’s suffering will continue for the foreseeable future.
James Hilton is a soccer writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @jameshilton1980, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google