Dietmar Hamann fears Liverpool fans may have to get used to not having Champions League football at Anfield for the next few years at least.
Since winning the Carling Cup in February, a run of five defeats in six Premier League games has seen Kenny Dalglish’s side crash out contention for a top four finish.
Liverpool could still end the campaign with two trophies, with an FA Cup semi-final against Merseyside rivals Everton on the horizon, but Hamann claims a second successive year without Champions League football will be a huge blow to the club’s future.
“If Liverpool were to win the FA Cup as well [as the Carling Cup] it would be a good season but at the same time these days everybody knows how important the Champions League is, with the money involved,” the former Reds star told talkSPORT.
“It will be the second year running that Liverpool don’t play in the Champions League. You need to play in the Champions League to give yourself the best possible chance to succeed in the future. We know how much money is involved in the Champions League.
“If they don’t get in the Champions League this year, I worry whether Liverpool gets in the Champions League next year, because if you were ever going to get back in the Champions League I thought this was the time to do it.
“Not doing it for a second year running, it will obviously be harder to attract good players because everybody wants to play in the Champions League.”