Liverpool books Champions League berths

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And so the fact that the race to make the top four came down to the final day is no surprise.

"Finishing the season with seven goals in two games is flawless, hopefully I can continue it at the start of next season", he said.

Former players Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher, retired but in the squad for the showpiece game against the A-League champions, were named in the starting line-up alongside 17-year-old forward Ben Woodburn.

Taking their comeback victory at Stoke City on 8th April as the start of their "last few games", Liverpool won 50% of their headed duels - up on their Premier League season average of 43%.

Most importantly, however, Liverpool returned to the Champions League with a 3-0 win over already-relegated Middlesbrough.

After all, the Reds have only been in the Champions League once since 2009 when they went out in the group stage, and even that was an ill-fated attempt under Brendan Rodgers, who rather bizarrely ended up prioritising the league.

"A club like Liverpool needs to be in the Champions League", Reds boss Jurgen Klopp said. "More than ever we had to stick together and be strong because it's been very hard for us".

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"I'm experienced enough to deal with it but it was a big handicap for the team because they played in a very hostile environment". What do we need?' - most of the work is already done. "Past year we came close (to a trophy) but couldn't get over the line", said Milner.

Emmanuel Petit has warned Arsene Wenger that Arsenal will have to spend big to compete for top-class players this summer.

A new left-back is on Klopp's list of targets after Milner, a right-footed midfielder, deputised all season.

"After the second goal, everybody could see how good we can be".

While the prospect of Champions League football should improve the quality of player Liverpool can attract, they will face close regional competition for signings from Manchester City and potentially United, if Jose Mourinho's side qualify by beating Ajax in tomorrow's Europa League final.

Brilliant strikes from Georginio Wijnaldum, Philippe Coutinho and Adam Lallana guaranteed a place in next season's qualification play-off as Klopp's men overcame some early nerves to show their class on the last day of the season.

Last year Arsenal was the seventh richest club in the world according to the Deloitte money league.

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