Ramblings of a Soccer Junky
Friday, June 10, 2005
  Rules changed for the Reds
Ok, so UEFA show how spineless they are and Liverpool will play in the first qualifying round of the Champions League next season. Sorry, but I still don't agree with this.

The key point of the deal are:

I guess I shouldn't be sad that Chelsea, Arsenal and Man U will get less money because of Liverpool inclusion...it's not like the need the cash. I wonder if that last point will ever come into play again? My question is, does anyone know who got left out now that Liverpool are in?

Anyway, this is the end of it. Good luck to them. Should be interesting to see how they perform in some small former Soviet Republic in the middle of the summer. Will we hear complaints about the lack of summer break or too many early fixtures now?

I'm sure I'll hear it from my Scouse mates now. :)

UPDATE: I only posted this an hour ago and already I found Scousers are moaning about the decision.

"Having to play these qualifying rounds is an insult to the name of Liverpool Football Club. "We should have told them to stick it, gone into the Uefa Cup, and gone for the Premier League title instead."

Perhaps if you'd have gone after the Premier League title and managed to finish above Everton, you wouldn't be in this situation.

Aside from not letting us in at all, could Uefa have given us anything less?

Yeah, they could have told you to enjoy a good run in the UEFA Cup.

"It could be a minus rather than a bonus. You could see Liverpool finishing half-way down the league next season just because of the extra physical pressure on the players."

Yep, only a couple spots lower than you finished this season.

Of course, now we have another twist as well. It seems to Premier League is now insisting that Man City get Liverpool's UEFA Cup spot.

When will it end? This is just getting silly now. Of course, none of this would have happened if UEFA or the English FA would have just stuck to the rules in the first place and said only the top four finishers in the league get spots.

Don't get me wrong, I was happy to watch Liverpool's run in the Champions League this season. The final was a classic. However, all this silliness about defending their title should have been moot from the start. Now the rules are changed going forward and let's hope teams will just have larger squads and we don't have this sort of thing again.

Meanwhile the FA's website says in their Guide to European Qualification that, "as a result of England's place in the UEFA Coefficient Rankings, England has four places in the UEFA Champions League and three places in the UEFA Cup." It goes on to say that for the Champions League, "England is entitled to four places in the Champions League, i.e. the four top-placed teams in the Premiership. If an English team wins the Champions League and finishes in the top four, we do not gain an extra place. If an English team wins the Champions League and do not finish in the top four, The FA can request that this team qualify automatically for the Champions League, but the fourth-placed team in the Premiership is entered into the UEFA Cup."

the allocation has been there, but my guess is that the FA had it there for the Mancs and maybe the London clubs. If the Mancs had been playing in the final and out of the top four, the FA would have told Everton to plan on playing in the UEFA just like the Spanish FA did with Real Madrid. The FA rules should state definitively whether the Champions are going to defend, not they can request which implies they will choose who they want to champion a cause for. As an Ipswich supporter, I would think you would be more in favour of a uniform rule rather the decision being left in the hands of the FA on a case by case basis because if they waffle on a team like Liverpool, Ipswich would have no chance.
I somehow knew I'd be hearing from you. :)

Rules are rules. I don't like the idea that the league or any governing body can change them after the fact. Even if it were Ipswich in Liverpool's situation (yeah, that's a dream) I'd be saying we should be happy to be back in Europe playing in the UEFA Cup next season. Come to think of it, I was ecstatic Town finished 5th in the Premiership and qualified for a UEFA Cup 4 years ago. :)
rules are rules but this rule is ambigious. had the FA said if a team wins the Champions League and finishes outside the top four, we will (not can) request..... or we will not request........,then there would be no issue.

a few years back, Ipswich got to play in the UEFA Cup after getting relegated because the rules clearly stated that the Fair Play team would go. No one was bothered, even though numerous teams finish higher, because the rule was clear.
Ipswich played in the UEFA Cup by finishing 5th in the Premiership as well. ;)

It's funny, I think we are actually in agreement here Daz. :)
in all honesty, i was resigned months ago, that liverpool would be in the UEFA Cup and i was fine with it. i was so chuffed that we won it.

i only got riled up about when i saw that quote from the FA. even though we won it after finishing fourth, i still think it's ridiculous that 3rd and 4th place teams are in this. it is all about money and as long as we turn the telly on to watch the matches, it won't change and i am guilty as charged.
Here's an idea, why don't they restrict the Champions League to just the Champions from each country? ;)
novel idea
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An American who fell in love with soccer while living in Europe.

Location: Hoosierville, IN, United States
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