- Alisson Becker made himself a Liverpool FC hero on Tuesday when he produced a last-gasp save that retained his team’s 1-0 lead.
- Had Alisson fumbled the shot, then Napoli would have equalized in the crucial UEFA Champions League group-stage match and taken Liverpool’s place in the next round of the competition.
- The Champions League is a lucrative tournament, and Liverpool’s involvement in the next round, regardless of whether it wins or loses, is already worth an astonishing $10.8 million in UEFA revenue.
- Read all of Business Insider’s coverage for the 2018-2019 European soccer season right here.
Alisson Becker’s save on Tuesday is already worth millions to Liverpool FC.
The Liverpool goalkeeper was tested in the dying moments of a tense Champions League group-stage match against Napoli, a game the English club was leading 1-0 at the time.
Napoli forward Arkadiusz Milik found himself in front of goal in the last moments and tested Alisson with a predator’s shot from a near point-blank range, but the Brazilian shot-stopper got a limb in the way and somehow blocked the shot.
Had Milik’s strike gone in, Napoli would have equalized 1-1 and consequently taken Liverpool’s place in the next round of the competition, thereby dumping the Reds into Europe’s secondary – and less lucrative – tournament, the Europa League.
Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk called the save “unbelievable,” according to The Guardian.
Watch it again right here:
Making yourself big, Alisson style ???? pic.twitter.com/8aTQhq4PR0
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) December 12, 2018
Or here if you are in a different region:
When Liverpool needed a hero, up stepped @Alissonbecker ????
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) December 11, 2018
But Alisson did what he was brought in to do at Liverpool – frustrate the team’s opponents, keep a clean sheet, and make a return on the £65 million ($82 million) investment the club made when it bought him in a then-world-record transfer for a goalkeeper in July.
Alisson is doing just that, as that one save made Liverpool more than $10 million – the club will earn €9.5 million ($10.8 million) in prize money for participating in the first Champions League knockout round in February and March.
Had the team got dumped into the Europa League, it would have earned a paltry €500,000 ($570,000) by participating in the first knockout round next year.
So regardless of whether Liverpool wins or loses its Champions League knockout-round fixtures in 2019, it will be more than $10 million better off – largely because of Alisson’s last-minute heroics.