Rangers and the Champions League cash windfall that lies 180 minutes away

·4-min read
Rangers and the Champions League cash windfall that lies 180 minutes away
Rangers and the Champions League cash windfall that lies 180 minutes away

Rangers took a step closer to the Champions League promised land with a comeback win over Union Saint-Gilloise that earned them a spot in the play-off round.

It means Gio van Bronckhorst’s side are just 180 minutes away from returning to Europe’s top table, where the continent’s giants and a hefty payday lie in wait.

Qualification to face PSV in the play-off round has already guaranteed Rangers a minimum of €5m (£4.2m) in prize money, which is given to clubs eliminated at that stage – but what would they earn if they emerge victorious?

There is no prize money on offer for winning the tie itself, but qualification for the group stage would open up a new world of riches for the Ibrox club.

Each of the 32 clubs to qualify receive a starting fee of €15.64m (£13.2m) for participating, as well as a payment based on their coefficient ranking.

UEFA has set aside €600.6m (£507.3m) to be divided between the qualifying clubs, but the payment will not be shared on an equal basis.

This payment is broken down into what the governing body calls ‘coefficient shares’, with each share worth €1.137m (£960,000). The top ranked club, Real Madrid, will be given 32 of these shares while the qualifying club with the lowest coefficient gets one.

The unfortunate aspect for Rangers is that while they’ve surged up the coefficient in recent years thanks to some fine European runs, the ranking is done over a 10 year period. That means they have five years with no continental football and the Progres Niederkorn season to contend with.

READ MORE: Rangers hero Ally McCoist quids in after James Tavernier Champions League bet

Since we don’t know the all of the qualified teams at this stage it’s impossible to say exactly how much money will flow into the Ibrox coffers but the current standing in that table is 66th.

In the other play-off tie on the league path, Benfica (15th) and Dynamo Kiev (29th) are both above Rangers.

The champions path has the following ties and rankings: Qarabag (84th) vs Viktoria Plzen (48th), Bodo/Glimt (162nd) vs Dinamo Zagreb (44th), Maccabi Haifa (72nd) vs Red Star (62nd) and Copenhagen (42nd) vs Trabzonspor (125th).

All teams currently qualified for the competition are ranked above Rangers so the worst case scenario would bring a coefficient payment of £960,000 and the best case scenario where the lower ranked team wins in each of the would mean around £3.8m.

There is also prize money on offer for results in the group stage, with €2.8m (£2.37m) for a win and €930,000 (£786,000) for a draw.

Added to that is the money set aside for television revenue, what UEFA calls the ‘market pool’, and here things get a little more complicated.

Glasgow Times:
Glasgow Times:

The governing body has allocated €300.3m (£253.7m) to be distributed among the clubs based on the size of their television market, but the exact figures for each nation won’t be decided until the end of the season.

What we know is that Scotland is included in the market pool for the whole UK, with BT Sport holding exclusive rights to the matches.

The Premiership share is based on Scotland’s population relative to the other UK nations, so will be around 10 per cent of the money received by English Premier League sides.

The money allocated to the English teams last season was calculated at around €68m (£57m), so just under £6m would go to Scotland’s top two.

Of that money, 50 per cent would be divided between Rangers and Celtic – 55 per cent for the champions and 45 per cent for the runners-up.

The other half would be based on how many matches each side plays in the competition – so if both sides are eliminated after six matches they’d get an equal share.

Finally, there’s the income from ticket sales. A sold-out Ibrox is worth around £1m on a European night, so with the home leg against PSV and then three group stage matches we can add another £4m to the total.

The grand total

Taking all those figures into account we can get an estimate of how much Rangers stand to earn. There are of course further riches to be gained by qualifying from the group stage but for the sake of this calculation we’ll look only at the group stage.

For the sake of argument we’ll take two wins and a draw as the return from the six matches, to take in the prize money detailed above.

Here’s how it breaks down.

Starting fee: £13.2m

Coefficient share: £960k-£3.8m

Prize money: £5.52m

TV money: £4.35m

Matchday income: £4m

Total: £28-30m