Owen: Only Barca and Real are bigger than Liverpool

Date published: Thursday 19th May 2016 8:40

Michael Owen believes that only La Liga giants Barcelona and Real Madrid can claim to be more attractive clubs than Liverpool.

The Reds were defeated 3-1 in the Europa League final by Sevilla on Wednesday, but former striker Owen believes that a lack of European football next season will not harm the club’s prospects in the transfer window.

Manager Jurgen Klopp has vowed to act this summer, and Owen feels that Liverpool will be able to attract most talents in world football.

“When you look at it, in the cold light of day, who’s better than Liverpool?” he asked on BT Sport. “Who’s bigger than Liverpool? Who can you go to?

“Barcelona and Real Madrid will attract anyone, I suppose.

“But after that, where else is there to go? I can’t imagine you’re going to go anywhere else in the Premier League.”

Klopp’s side finished eighth in the Premier League and missed out on a Europa League spot when Manchester City beat them 3-1 on penalties in the Capital One Cup final.

A Champions League place was on offer to the winners in Basel, but after Daniel Sturridge gave Liverpool a deserved half-time lead over Sevilla, the Reds capitulated in the second half.

Kevin Gameiro equalised within seconds of the restart and Coke took advantage of some slack defending to bag a match-winning brace as Sevilla lifted the trophy for a third successive year. You can read 16 conclusions on the game here.

However, Liverpool’s most successful domestic campaign in recent years came in 2013-14, when an absence from European competitions saw them finish second under Brendan Rodgers after they had threatened to win a first league title since 1989-90.

Owen, who scored 118 league goals for the Reds, said on BT Sport Europe: “The final’s gone, we haven’t won it, we’re not in the Champions League.

“This club… you can’t rest on your laurels… you cant rest on what’s happened.

“It’s all looking forward now and I think they’ve got the right man in place to do the job.

“As he (Klopp) says, time on the training pitch – that’s a positive – time to get more belief in the squad and maybe add one or two new faces to it.

“But start looking forward. It’s going to be disappointing for a few weeks, maybe even longer, but at some point you’ve got to put it behind you and start looking to the future.

“Once pre-season starts there will be a new wave of optimism and as I said the last really good season in the Premier League that Liverpool had was when they weren’t in any European competition, so maybe use that as an advantage on your competitors.”

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