Rangers will get their Europa League campaign underway on July 12th as they look to banish memories of last year’s shambolic exit to minnows Progres Niederkorn – but recently released figures reveal just how costly not making the Champions League is.
UEFA have increased prize money for all three continental competitions – Champions League, Europa League and Super League – and the eye-watering figures, reported by STV, show why the Gers can’t afford to be stuck playing second-fiddle to bitter rivals Celtic.
If the Gers can make it to the group stages of the Europa League they stand to make £2.56million – after having made it through four rounds of qualifying.
Celtic will coin in £13.34million if they make the group stages of the Champions League.
With bonuses for results and other payments for TV rights and based on 10-year coefficients, the Champions League is a whole different world financially.
After the Hoops have had a near-unchallenged run at the riches Europe’s top club competition has to offer over the last six, it has allowed a huge financial gulf to open up between the Old Firm giants.
While it is far from the only thing that matters, there’s a clear correlation between a big bank balance and a big trophy cabinet and the Gers need to find a way to stop Celtic getting richer.
Changes to the structure of both competitions have made it harder for Scottish sides to reach the group stages consistently but the Gers need to find a way to get back to Europe’s top table.
Rangers fans might be rightly worried about the prospect of Celtic winning ten consecutive titles and shattering the long-standing record of nine shared by the Old Firm – but the possibility of Brendan Rodgers’ side continuing to make so much more money should be even more worrying.
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