Having just been beaten 8-1 over two legs by Tottenham, it wouldn’t be a stretch to imagine WAC Wolfsberger are feeling a little low.
The Austrian side will have known they were very much the underdogs in these games but, with Tottenham out of form, it was a perfect opportunity to make an impact and perhaps pull off a shock result.
That, of course, didn’t happen, with 8-1 over the two legs not even flattering Jose Mourinho and co. in truth.
It seems, though, rather than looking at the situation negatively, Wolfsberger are walking away with plenty of positives.
Krone look at that today and explain that in reality, this Europa League campaign was a highly beneficial one, and even the 4-0 defeat to Tottenham yesterday ‘can’t change that’.
For example, they managed to double their points tally in the group stages compared to last year and reach the last sixteen for the first time as well.
That’s all going to be very positive in terms of finances, with another €1m going to them for qualification and the entry fee, bonuses and a sum from coefficients all bringing in ‘over €7m’.
Indeed, that sum is set to rise later in the year with the ‘final settlement’, which will include money from the ‘market pool’ arriving six months after the end of the competition.
That price would have been higher in normal, non-COVID times, with the virus having robbed the club of money in some areas.
This was most felt in the home leg with Tottenham, which they were forced to hose in a neutral venue because of restrictions regarding flights from England.
A full Wörthersee stadium with Tottenham in town would have brought in €1m, with €1.5-2m extra in ticketing, catering and everything else from the group stages. Instead, the ‘exile’ in Bucharest has actually ended up costing the club €100,000.
That is something the Austrian government are looking to ‘cushion a little’ as compensation, although there will be no such compensation for ‘lost viewer income’.
That’s obviously disappointing for WAC, but, on the whole, it seems the experience has been a good one once again, even if Tottenham were in no mood to accommodate a famous giant killing.