Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has assured fans that the club will press ahead with their transfer plans regardless of whether they qualify for the Champions League next season.
The Reds come into the weekend sixth in the Premier League table, four points behind Chelsea in fourth, and their next chance to close that gap will come in Sunday’s visit to Old Trafford to face Manchester United.
Defeat in that game would be a huge blow in Liverpool‘s pursuit of the top four. Missing out on the Champions League obviously comes with significant financial implications which could hinder plans for the upcoming transfer window, in which Liverpool are expected to pursuit RB Leipzig centre-back Ibrahima Konate and perhaps a new forward.
However, Klopp was adamant that his side can still operate as normal in the transfer market without European football.
“Playing Champions League obviously is massive, especially from a financial point of view, for the club. It’s really important,” he told his pre-match press conference. “If we cannot make that, that’s not good, definitely not.
“But I don’t think it will change anything, because the situation was difficult before, it’s difficult after, so football is in a difficult situation. No, I don’t think it will change a lot.”
Klopp was under no illusion of just how important victory over United could be to their entire season, insisting it is ‘more than 100% necessary’ for his side to come away with all three points if they want to feature in the Champions League again.
“Without winning football games, we will not end up in any kind of European competition,” he continued. “It’s clear. For us, everything is clear. We have to win.
“It will be a very tough game, a very intense game hopefully, for both teams. We could see Man Utd playing [in Thursday’s 6-2 win over Roma], they are good, especially after their half-time talk. It looked like they were really flying.
“Whatever situation you are in, whether you’re a Liverpool player or manager, this is the game. You have to give absolutely everything.
“Is Old Trafford the best place to go after conceding late against Newcastle? I don’t know. Is it the best place to go after watching United score five goals in one half? I don’t know. It’s not important really, because a lot of things can happen between now and then. We just have to make sure we are ready for it.”