Their loss to Fulham on the weekend, combined with other results, means that they currently sit seven points off fourth-placed Chelsea. And having lost five of their last six games, there doesn’t seem to be much chance of them being able to pick up the form necessary to make a decent run at it.
This arguably means their best chance of qualifying for the Champions League next season is by winning this season’s competition. And speaking on ESPN FC, Nicol thinks that Liverpool’s recent team selection is a major indicator that the Reds and Jürgen Klopp have only got eyes on European glory for the rest of the campaign.
He said: “I think the fact that he made so many changes at the weekend that he’s kind of putting all his eggs in the Champions League basket. Because I mean, right now, regardless of the opposition, they don’t look like they’re gonna beat anybody.
“The fact is they’ve lost to a team in the bottom three – another team in the bottom three. So yeah, I think they’re doing the right thing.”
Will Liverpool win the Champions League again this year?
TIF Thoughts on Steve Nicol’s comments about Liverpool and their Champions League ambitions…
Nicol’s comments do make a lot of sense when you consider the situation Liverpool are in, but it is still a major risk for them to take if they just down tools domestically at this stage of the season, especially because it is in no way a guarantee that they will win the Champions League.
Given the state of their defence, and the calibre of attacking talent that European sides like Bayern Munich, Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City pose, it would take a miracle for a makeshift backline to come away from games against their type unscathed, making it a mammoth task for them to even think about going far.
And as a result, they may end up with nothing to show for this season, whether that be domestically or on the continental stage.