Dalglish fearful about Europa exit
Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish admitted their Europa League exit places extra significance on their domestic form.
The Reds' goalless draw against Braga at Anfield meant they went out of the competition 1-0 on aggregate at the last-16 stage.
In order to avoid failing to qualify for Europe for the first time since 1999 they now have to finish fifth in the Barclays Premier League.
But that is no easy feat with current incumbents Tottenham six points ahead having played one match less.
"I don't know if it will be a help not being in the Europa League," said the Scot.
"It (the Europa League) was an option for us to get back into Europe next year if we'd won it.
"But we know that in every league game we will have to try to get as much as we possibly can.
"We were going to do that any way, so I don't know if it will be a blessing or not.
"You only get in Europe if you win games. If you win enough games and get enough points we will get in Europe."
Club record signing Andy Carroll made his first start after two substitute appearances after recovering from a thigh injury but even his presence could not force a breakthrough.
But Dalglish was happy with the £35million striker's performance.
"Andy stayed on longer than we hoped he would have to stay on but necessity meant he had to stay on the pitch because we were looking for a goal," said the Reds boss.
"Overall we are pleased to see him back on the pitch and we were not disappointed with his contribution in any way.
"It was a bit unfortunate he did not score a goal; he put one header wide in the first half and then had one stopped by Dirk Kuyt in the second.
"Considering it was his first start I think he can be very pleased with how he played.
"If Andy's header had gone in in the first half it could have been a different outcome but we never put anything past the goalkeeper.
"You need to be really strong creatively if you are going to break down a very organised side or you need a bit of luck and we certainly have not had much fortune over two legs.
"Like every other team in the world we could do with a bit more creativity but we are no different than anyone else."
Braga reached the quarter-finals for the first time in their history and the players enjoyed their moment on the Anfield pitch after the game.
"We have reasons to be proud. We achieved a different level that we have never achieved before," said coach Domingos Paciencia.
"Don't take things the wrong way for the way we celebrated. We are proud."