The defender believes the loss of Luis Suarez and the failure of the new players to acclimatise hurt the club early on.
The Reds finished the season in sixth place, with a 6-1 mauling by Stoke City on the final day a hugely disappointing end to a poor season.
There had been high hopes on Merseyside after pushing Manchester City so close for the title the season before, but the departure of Luis Suarez and a long-term injury to Daniel Sturridge seriously hurt the side.
And Skrtel believes the Uruguayan's exit played a big part in their failings.
“The departure of Suarez was significant. Each team would miss such a player,” he said.
“We failed because we did not meet the targets we have set. There is not much difference in finishing fifth or sixth, we would still not have qualified for the Champions League.”
Liverpool invested heavily in the summer to bring in a number of players, as they attempted to use the money from the sale of Suarez to fill out a small squad.
However, several of their big signings have so far failed to impressed at Anfield, with Mario Balotelli and Dejan Lovren two who have particularly disappointed so far, while Emre Can is the only one to have had a good season.
And Skrtel believes the failure of those players to acclimatise to a new club was a contributing factor to their poor form early on.
“The variation in the squad was big enough, but new players arrived and it is not always easy to acclimatise with to a new club,” he added.
“So the first half of the season was as it was. The second part has been improved, but the conclusion we cannot handle. "