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Shrewsbury boss says Jurgen Klopp's Cup call will cost his side over €500k


Kop boss Jurgen Klopp won't be in the dugout tonight

Kop boss Jurgen Klopp won't be in the dugout tonight

Kop boss Jurgen Klopp won't be in the dugout tonight

Shrewsbury boss Sam Ricketts says Jurgen Klopp's decision to play an Under-23 side in tonight's FA Cup replay at Anfield will cost the League One club over €500k.

Klopp and his Champions League winners are taking a one-week winter break, leaving Under-23 boss Neil Critchley taking charge tonight following the 2-2 draw nine days ago.

As a result, Liverpool bosses have slashed ticket prices to £15 for adults and £1 for kids. Clubs split the gate in the FA Cup so this will leave Shrewsbury out of pocket and only expected to earn between £120k and £170k.

When asked about the financial implications, Ricketts said: "It is huge. The revenue is vitally important for a club like ours who are self-sustaining.

"Let's say we walk out with £150,000 off the back of this replay. But if it was a full-on game you're looking at half a million and another £72,000 from television.

"That's a massive difference for a club like ours where every penny counts. Can we make the training pitches a bit better? Can we get one extra player in maybe?

"That's probably the biggest disappointment, the fact we're lacking revenue from the replay. It's an opportunity for a club like this to build something which lasts for 15 years and provides a real legacy."

Meanwhile, Critchley admits Klopp has the option to dial into the dressing room if he has a message for the young team.

"It was a message that came through, which I have to say was brilliant at that moment," Critchley said.

"Even though we were going off the pitch thinking 'We've played alright there but we're getting beat 4-0', it creates that element of doubt in your mind about whether you are doing the right thing and if you need to do something different.

"So when you get a message from the manager saying 'Don't change anything, carry on doing what you're doing, you've been brilliant', it just clears all that doubt in your mind and you can give that message to the players.

"The message killed every doubt, it settled them right down. It helped everyone at that moment.

"That option is available (on Tuesday), yes. But that's up to the manager. Another great quality of the manager is he trusts people to do their job.

"The best support he gives the players is he gives them a chance and an opportunity.

"I don't know what more support you could wish for as a young player.

"I know there has been a lot spoken going into the game, but there has been total clarity around the decision and we all support the decision. We all follow him because he has earned that."

Curtis Jones, who celebrated his 19th birthday last week, could become the club's youngest captain if he is picked to continue the job he has for the under-23s.

Pedro Chirivella, a comparative veteran at 22, wore the armband at Villa Park as Jones was in Qatar and Critchley suggested he had not made up his mind who to choose yet.

"I shall toss the coin and see which one it lands on," he added.

When it was pointed out the Toxteth-born Jones would become the club's youngest captain he joked: "Would he? He might give me a double-headed coin to flick then."

Jones has seven first-team appearances, scored in both FA Cup ties so far and is not short of self-confidence, but Critchley said that has to be encouraged within a structure.

"He is a young player who wants to prove himself. I don't see a problem with that," he said.

"He has belief in himself and he'll learn through experience of when to show that on the pitch and when not to show it.

"He is who he is. We are here to support him and guide him. You have to let Curtis have a certain amount of freedom in the way he plays because that's when he's at his best.

"But he has to do some of the other things in his game otherwise he won't be part of the team."

Additional reporting by PA

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