Manchester United will not appear in the UEFA Champions League next season, for the first time since the 1995/96 competition and only the second time in the 23 year history of the world’s most prestigious club competition.
That Manchester United would fall short of Champions League qualification has been inevitable for a while, but their fate was sealed by a 2-0 away defeat Sunday to upstart Everton, who now place themselves just a point behind Arsenal in the race for fourth place in the Barclays Premier League — the final Champions League qualification slot — with each team having just three matches remaining on the fixture list.
Manchester United Maximum Points This Year Now 69, Arsenal Already At 70
Sunday’s loss, on the return to Goodison Park of embattled Manchester United Manager David Moyes who left Everton after last season to assume the helm of the Premier League’s most storied club, mathematically eliminates Manchester United from reaching that fourth spot, no matter what happens.
Manchester United is now in seventh place on just 57 points. But even though United has a game in hand on both Arsenal and Everton, even a perfect run-in would leave them at 69 points, one shy of the 70 where Arsenal now sit.
Moyes Says Club Working “Behind The Scenes” To Insure CL Return Next Year
Manager Moyes was likely holding out faint hope for a miracle finish to the 2013/14 campaign that might save not only the club’s tattered reputation but his own job, which will surely be in question again — as it has been for much of his debut season at Old Trafford — once the season is put to a merciful end.
Moyes was asked of the final, mathematical nail in the Champions League coffin hurts him.
“It does. It’s a part of this club. We want to be in it,” replied the first-year Manchester United manager. “We’ll do everything we can to get back in. We’re doing that behind-the-scenes right now.”
Elimination Of Manchester United Deals Blow To Local Economy
The UEFA Champions League is not only the most prestigious competition in European club football, it is also the most lucrative. The absence of Manchester United from next season’s competition will have significant impact on the Manchester region, in the north of England.
A recent study estimated that a Champions League without Manchester United, while obviously delivering a blow to the pride of the club’s fans, will cost the local economy £7.3 million, or $12.25 million in U.S. terms.
Since the European championship tournament began in its current format in 1992, Manchester United has played 97 Champions League home games, each one bringing an estimated 10,000 visitors into the region for a stay on at least one overnight. Other than the 1995/96 season, the last and until now only time Manchester United has failed to make it into the Champions League, the Manchester area has been able to count on those visitors pumping cash into the local economy every year.