Date: 12th July 2019 at 6:14am
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Celtic will receive 50% more in prize money from reaching the play-off round of the than they do for finishing on top of the SPFL over 38 matches!

Neil Lennon’s side are well on their way into the second round after opening up with a 3-1 win over Sarajevo with a trip to Macedonia likely if they complete the job against the Bosnian champions at home on Wednesday.

Last season Celtic crashed out to AEK Athens in the third round before seeing off Suduva to reach the group phase of the Europa League.

Going one stage further would provide the hoops with at least £4.5m direct from , as opposed to the £3m they picked up from the SPFL for winning the title last season, with qualification for the group stage of the Champions League opening up all sorts of payments including £2.4m for winning a single match.

If Celtic reach the group stage they will be in among the third seeds which means that they will be drawn alongside one club with a lower co-efficient.

Breaking down the latest figures from UEFA the Daily Mail reports:

If Celtic were to reach the fourth round of Champions League play-offs but then lose, missing out on qualification to the group stages, they would receive a guaranteed £4.5million.

But if they could get through that round and join the English quartet in the group stages, that is when the big money starts to come as the 32 clubs all get more than £13million in ‘starting fees’, plus £2.4million for a win and £800,000 for a draw.

The prize money in the knock-out rounds ramps up from £8.5million for each club in the last 16, to £9.4million in the last eight, £10.8million in semi-finals, £13.5million in the final and an extra £3.6million to the winner. 

As mentioned, 30 per cent of the prize fund – £525million – is then dished out according to each club’s record in Europe over the last 10 years. This is done by dividing the pot into ‘coefficient shares’, with the top-ranked club, currently Real Madrid, getting 32 of these £1million shares and the 32nd-ranked club receiving one.

Chelsea are currently England’s best-ranked club in fifth place, with United sixth, Arsenal ninth, Liverpool 12th, City 14th and Spurs 21st. Celtic are the best-ranked Scottish club in 45th.

The market pool allocation represents 15 per cent of the total prize fund but is based on even more variables than the performance coefficients, as each club’s payment depends on how much money domestic broadcasters have paid UEFA for its rights and how far other teams from their country progress.

Celtic will be seeded in each round of the qualifying process, playing against champions from similar or lower ranked countries. If they had beaten AEK Athens last season they would have played Vidi of Hungary for a place in the group stage.