Jurgen Klopp downplays significance of Liverpool missing out on Champions League: ‘Who cares?’

Jurgen Klopp downplays significance of Liverpool missing out on Champions League: ‘Who cares?’

Jurgen Klopp has dismissed the significant of Liverpool missing out on the Champions League, claiming the unity between fans and players this season was a “trophy” for him.

Manchester United’s victory over Chelsea on Thursday night confirmed they will finish in the top four and ended Liverpool’s slim hopes of overtaking their big rivals, a prospect that was only made possible by Klopp’s side clicking into gear late in the season.

A run of seven wins in a row came to an end with the draw against Aston Villa last time out, and Liverpool will be looking to maintain that unbeaten strike on the final day of the season when they travel to a face a Southampton side that will finish bottom of the table.

Next season will be the first time the Reds are not in the Champions League since the 2015/16 campaign, Klopp’s first year at the club, but the Liverpool boss remained upbeat when looking ahead to that.

“This season was not great and from a financial point of view, that’s the only problem really,” Klopp said.

“That’s a big problem in football, I know that. But besides that, we have European nights next year. Instead of Tuesday, Wednesday, it’s a Thursday. Who cares?

“Great games, atmosphere, the FA Cup will happen again, the League Cup will happen again. Great. And the Premier League is there as well, let’s give it a go.

“When everything goes in the right direction, it’s easy to feel together. When it’s not, it’s much more challenging. I didn’t want to prove that point, but we did. For me, that’s the trophy we won this year.”

On whether the lack of Champions League football will impact the club’s transfer plans, the Liverpool boss added: “I don’t think so, but you never know.

“It is always possible and probably likely that things won’t go as big as you want because the better the player, the less the desire of the club is to let him go. We are prepared for that.”

Mohamed Salah took to social media after United’s victory over Chelsea, posting that he was “totally devastated” to miss out on the Champions League as the players failed to achieve “the bare minimum” for Liverpool.

Klopp revealed the forward was in a more upbeat mood on Friday, though the Liverpool boss understood Salah’s frustration.

“It is completely normal,” Klopp said. “In the world of social media so many bad things happen constantly and I don’t think that was one of them.

“It was a just a normal description of his situation, of his feeling, and in that moment directly after the game he’s right, it’s not the moment to immediately any send optimistic message. Maybe an hour or a day later.

“But I saw him now in the canteen and he was smiling. I don’t know for which reason as I didn’t ask him, but he is not in a bad mood. That’s it.”