Thohir: Inter not reliant on European football

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A season without European football would not be a financial disaster for Serie A giants Inter, insists owner Erick Thohir.

Erick Thohir insists Inter will not be adversely affected financially by missing out on European football next season.

Inter have not competed in the UEFA Champions League since 2011-12, but qualified for the Europa League for 2014-15 by finishing fifth in Serie A last term.

With just over half of the season gone, Inter are 10th after 20 matches, some 10 points adrift of third-placed Napoli.

Inter also remain under investigation by UEFA over their Financial Fair Play regulations, but have invested in the likes of Lukas Podolski and Xherdan Shaqiri in the January transfer window.

And owner Thohir insists that the club's global standing means that Champions League revenue is not essential.

"This [importance of Champions League revenue] is interesting, everyone always sees things based on rumours," Thohir told Goal.com. 

"We have to remember that Inter are still the best top 10 football brand in the world as well as our revenue, which will be entering to the top 10 in the world.

"Our revenue without the Champions League season could reach €180-200million and one season in there, it can improve about $20-30million.

"No Champions League, no problem for Inter. No Europa League too would be no problem. But, because we are a top-10 brand in the football industry and we have huge fan base, we have to achieve highly.

"It's not Inter if we finish in ninth or 10th position. I have to say Europa or Champions League [football] is our target."

Thohir admits that many clubs are confused by FFP rules, but feels that it is important to have regulations in place to ensure teams spend within their means.

"Many people are confused with the Financial Fair Play rules, all European clubs must follow the rules," he added. "This is the way of UEFA to make sure their football industry is going on the plan.

"[They are needed to] avoid clubs that at first seem well but are going bankrupt eventually. It disrupts football's image. FFP keeps the club to spend the money wisely, they have to spend based on revenue.

"Same thing happened to Inter, I believe there is no shortcut to build a team, but we must have long-term project. When we want to sign players, we have to make sure to get players based on the team requirements."