Diogo Jota admitted that Liverpool fans may view the club as a 'downgrade' in the Europa League

Diogo Jota admits Europa League football next season will ‘feel like a downgrade’ for Liverpool fans – Daily Mail

Liverpool star Diogo Jota claims playing in the Europa League will feel like a ‘DOWNGRADE’ for the club – as he jokes, he is keen to avoid meeting Real Madrid in the final stages as they ‘always knock us out’ ‘

  • Diogo Jota admitted Liverpool fans may see Europa League as a ‘downgrade’
  • But former Wolves star insisted Reds are still motivated to win the league
  • Jota joked that the club could face another European showdown with Real Madrid

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Diogo Jota has admitted that playing Liverpool in the Europa League next season will feel like a downgrade for the club’s fans.

Despite a strong end to the season, Jürgen Klopp’s side failed to secure a Champions League place, eventually finishing 5th in the Premier League, four points behind Newcastle.

As a result, The Reds will play in the continent’s secondary league for the first time since runners-up in 2016, in what was Jürgen Klopp’s first season in charge at Anfield.

Despite the fact that Liverpool fans may be disappointed that their club will not be vying for a seventh Champions League trophy next season, Jota insisted that the Europa League has its own prestige.

“I’ve played with Wolves in the Europa League before,” Jota told FourFourTwo.

The Reds were last in the competition in 2016, where they were defeated by Sevilla in the final

“Although the fans are used to playing in the Champions League every year and it will feel like a downgrade, it is still a prestigious competition. We will do our best to win.’

Perhaps the only silver lining to Liverpool’s failure to qualify for the Champions League is that it significantly reduces the chances of the club being forced against Real Madrid again.

The La Liga runners-up have become the club’s bogey team in European competitions in recent years, with the Reds losing in the 2018 and 2022 finals, the 2021 quarter-finals and the 2023 round of 16 to Champions League defeats League vs Los Blancos.

Jota joked that he hopes playing in the Europa League means the club can avoid another European clash with Real Madrid

However, Real could still technically meet Liverpool in the Europa League if they fall in the league by finishing third in their group.

The former Wolves star went on to joke that he hopes his side can avoid the Spanish giants with a confrontation between the two teams that is not inconceivable:

‘[Real Madrid] could somehow get third in their group and still get in our way. But ever since I came to Liverpool I’ve always been knocked out by Real Madrid, so hopefully they’re not there [in the Europa League].’

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