KLOPP’S LAST GAME SOUVENIR

(191222) -- DOHA, Dec. 22, 2019 (Xinhua) -- Liverpool FC players celebrate with the trophy after the final of the FIFA Club World Cup Qatar 2019 against Flamengo in Doha, capital of Qatar, Dec. 21, 2019. (Photo by Nikku/Xinhua)

What Liverpool would need to qualify for expanded Club World Cup

The football calendar is to expand from 2025 as the Club World Cup takes on a new look, but Liverpool’s involvement, if any, will come from two possible routes.

Jurgen Klopp‘s Reds lifted the Club World Cup for the first time in 2019, an opportunity they earned after lifting Ol’ Big Ears for the sixth time.

The format in Qatar on that occasion, and in recent times, has pitted the winner of each confederation’s premier club competition, in addition to the host’s champions, against one another.

Real Madrid are the current holders and under the new qualification rules have guaranteed their place in the expanded 32-team competition for 2025.

That is according to the Times‘ chief sports reporter Martyn Ziegler, who states sources have revealed Champions League winners from 2022-25 will be guaranteed to take part in the reformed Club World Cup competition.

2CKB4BF Soccer Football - Club World Cup - Final - Liverpool v Flamengo - Khalifa International Stadium, Doha, Qatar - December 21, 2019 Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp celebrates with the trophy after winning the Club World Cup REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach (REUTERS / Alamy Stock Photo)

So, that is one route that Liverpool could find themselves taking should they be one of the next three winners of the European Cup.

The other avenue is via coefficient rankings, with eight of the 12 European spots to be decided by performances in European competition over the previous five years.

Ziegler goes on to say that “using the latest coefficient rankings,” Man City would “almost certainly qualify,” while the other English spot is dependent on continued performances by Liverpool, Chelsea and Man United.

There is a caveat to that, though. The report states that a “cap of two places per country from the coefficient spots” would be in place, but it can rise to four to account for Champions League winners.

FIFA president Gianni Infantino has been pushing for this expanded competition for a number of years and finally got his wish, but at what cost?

Notably, the Times go on to say that “the World Leagues Forum and the Premier League are still opposed to the new expanded competition,” which will come as no surprise.

The competition is to change from an annual event to every four years and is to take place in the summer months, with the first edition to be held in June and July 2025.