Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp acknowledged Champions League prize money is crucial to taking the club to the next level ahead of Wednesday’s clash with Bayern Munich.
The Reds travel to Munich having drawn 0-0 at Anfield in the last-16 first leg last month, just about making Bayern favourites with some pundits.
However, any score draw will see Liverpool progress and, having gone all the way to last season’s final before losing to Real Madrid, they are well aware of how financially rewarding a run in the competition can be.
That added financial firepower helped them further boost the squad with the likes of Alisson and Fabinho for this campaign, and while Klopp says elimination on Wednesday would not be “the end of the world”, he is conscious of what they will be giving up should Liverpool bow out.
“It is not that the players prefer the Champions League to winning the league,” he told reporters. “But they like this kind of game.
“There are only two interesting games in the whole of Europe that night. Let’s play them, let’s watch them. This is the spotlight you want as a professional football player, so let’s play the game.
M A T C H D A Y I N M U N I C H
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) March 13, 2019
“We all have to qualify constantly for the Champions League. That’s what gives us the money to improve to do the next step and the next step.
“When we qualified by beating Napoli [in the group stage], I’m not sure how much, but it was [worth] a lot of money in one game.
“I didn’t think a second about that before that game. It wasn’t like: ‘Oh my God! We have to earn this money for the club!’
“We only wanted to go through, but after we got through it was like: ‘Wow! That’s proper!’
“It is a money-throwing competition, if I can say that, and we have to be in it as long as possible because we have to improve the situation for the club.
“It’s not like we always ask people: ‘Do you have some money? Do you have some money?’ We have to earn most of the money for ourselves with the football that we play.
“That is exactly what you can do in the Champions League. If it happens, it will be a great night. If it doesn’t happen, it is not the end of the world.”
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