Liverpool’s Rodgers happy to qualify for Europe via Fair Play league
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers insists the Reds would accept a place in the Europa League via the Fair Play league next season
Brendan Rodgers says he would have no issues with Liverpool qualifying for Europe via the Fair Play league next season.
The Merseyside outfit are second behind Arsenal in the Premier League’s disciplinary standings but the Gunners are expected to finish in the European places, meaning Liverpool would receive England’s potential Fair Play spot.
Uefa awards a place in the Europa League first-round qualifiers to the three European nations with the best disciplinary record and England were in fourth position when the standings were last published on 31 December.
Earlier this week, Rodgers rubbished talk of the club using the Fair Play route, which would mean a return to action in June and would clash with the club’s pre-season tour of Asia and Australia the following month.
But at a news conference on Friday, the 40-year-old insisted Liverpool want to be in Europe next season and would not snub the Fair Play league despite his initial reservations.
“I think I was asked the question last week and [my reply] was obviously meant as a joke, but it gets reportedly differently. We want to be in European football however it comes, but obviously we’d prefer to go down the football route,” Rodgers said.
“As a football club you have to [accept the offer]. I don’t think it’s something you can turn down if you get an opportunity to go into European football.
“The journey we had this year in the Europa League, all the players thoroughly enjoyed it. It was a great exercise for us. We were bitterly disappointed to go out. If we got the chance to do it again, for sure we would.”
Liverpool crashed out of the Europa League at the hands of Zenit St Petersburg in the last-32 stage this season.