UEFA announces new format for its club competitions and hosts for upcoming UEFA tournaments
In a UEFA Executive Committee meeting in Montreux, Switzerland, new reforms have been made for UEFA club competitions as of the 2024/25 season. The hosts for the upcoming UEFA tournaments have also been decided in the meeting. The remaining Hosts for the EURO 2020 are yet to be finalized as the panel has decided to roll out the hosts on 23 April 2020.
The new reforms have come after a long consultation across the football family and unanimous backing from the ECA Board and the UEFA Club Competitions Committee. The changes have been made for the positive future of European football and to secure the sustainability of domestic leagues.
UEFA President Aleksander Čeferin said on the new format that “This new format supports the status and future of the domestic game throughout Europe as well. It retains the principle that domestic performance should be the key to qualification and reconfirms the principles of solidarity right through the game and of open competition.”
He further added, “This evolved format will still keep alive the dream of any team in Europe to participate in the UEFA Champions League thanks to results obtained on the pitch and it will enable long-term viability, prosperity, and growth for everyone in European football, not just a tiny, self-selected cartel.”
The new format for Champions League
The total number of teams will be increased to 36 which was 32 previously. And the traditional group stages of the Champions League will be converted into a single league stage. What this will do is that now every club will play 10 league stage games against 10 different teams (Five away games and Five Home Games). Previously it was six games against three opponents on a home and away basis.
The top eight teams in the league stage will find direct qualifications in the round of 16. On the other hand, the teams finishing in 9th to 24th place will have to compete in a two-legged play-off to book their berth for the last 16.
Similar format changes will also be applied to the UEFA Europa Conference League and UEFA Europa League. The games before the final will be played in the midweek so as to give space to the Domestic league calendar across Europe.
Appointment of hosts
Host associations were appointed for the following youth championship final tournaments:
- UEFA Women’s Under-17 Championship: Estonia 2023, Sweden 2024, Faroe Islands 2025.
- UEFA Under-17 Championship: Hungary 2023, Cyprus 2024.
- UEFA Women’s Under-19 Championship: Belgium 2023, Lithuania 2024, Belarus 2025.
- UEFA Under-19 Championship: Malta 2023, Northern Ireland 2024, Romania 2025.
- Under-19 Futsal EURO 2022: Spain