Rangers managing director Stewart Robertson details financial reality of Champions League involvement

The Ibrox chief confirmed how the competition’s co-efficient change has affected prize money, with a place in the quarter finals required to hit the £40million headline figure.

Rangers managing director Stewart Robertson insists fans are wrong to believe the Champions League will bring in the £40million headline figure this season after stating the competition is not as lucrative as it once was for the club.

Many thought the Ibrox side were looking at a significant cash boost when Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s side knocked PSV Eindhoven out of the qualifying round to enter the group stage of UEFA’s premier club tournament for the first time since 2010.

In reality, Robertson believes the club will have to reach the quarter finals to be certain of securing such a staggering return, which would allow the Gers to re-shape their entire financial model and allow for more funds to be freed up in the transfer market.

Rangers managing director Stewart Robertson has explained the Champions League is not as lucrative as it once was. (Photo by Rob Casey / SNS Group)

In an exclusive interview with the Rangers Review, Robertson noted the club are likely to accumulate around half of that figure due to a change in the distribution model, specificially how one of the biggest revenue generators is now divided up.

Another reason is down to the club’s lack of European football between 2012 and 2017, with the current squad already facing an uphill battle to progress in the competition after suffering heavy defeats to Ajax and Napoli in their opening two fixtures.

Robertson said: “Some think the money has fallen out of the sky but it’s not like that because we know we will be in the group stages of the Europa League.

That’s budgeted. The £40m number is just wrong. Unless we perform really well, get through to the next round, even get through to the last eight, we are probably not getting anywhere close to £40m.

“And we know the challenge in doing that because you are up against the biggest clubs in Europe. When you sit with Dortmund last year and you hear budgets are five times ours, I suspect we will have one of the smallest budgets in the Champions League this year.

“Against Napoli, I thought we showed we can compete. Take the Ajax game away because that was different. Everybody knows we can do better but you realise the difference between the Europa League and the Champions League in terms of quality.

“I hope people can now see (the reality). I think we should have done more to get that message out earlier.”

Explaining how the new distribution model works, Robertson admitted: “In 2021-24 the distribution model changed.

“You get a base fee which is just over £13m, there’s an added element of the market pool, but it’s not a lot of money, maybe £1m or £2m which is based on the TV market compared against others.

Allan McGregor was Rangers' man of the match against Napoli. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

“You also get a performance-based payment subject to how you do. What used to be the other big element of it was the market pool. They have changed it so that more or less half the money is based on your 10-year coefficient ranking.

“Because Rangers were down the leagues, we weren’t in it for five years then the sixth wasn’t great (when the club were knocked out by Progres Niederkorn).

“So we only have four years’ worth of points and when you rank the 32 teams in the Champions League, we are 31st. Every position is worth €1.1m. So, as the 31st team, we will get €2.2m. If you are Real Madrid, who are the number one, you get €36m.

“Back in the day the Champions League was worth much closer to £30m but now it’s going to much close, for us, to £20m. So there’s a big, big difference.”