mai 27, 2024

Champions League 2024/25: Everything you need to know about the new format of Europe’s most prestigious club competition | Football News

4 min read

The Champions League has undergone a drastic revamp ahead of the 2024/25 season which sees the number of matches in the new format increase from 125 to 189.

The league phase will now be completed at the end of January instead of during December, while there will be weeks exclusively dedicated to the Champions League in the football calendar when no other European competitions are played.

The winners will have played 17 games across the competition, while matches played across Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in Europe’s premier club competition will become the new normal.

At least 10 of next season’s 36 clubs participating in the new league phase will come from Italy and Germany. Sky Sports provides you with a comprehensive guide to how the new format will work…

How does the new Champions League format work?

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UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said qualification will be ‘based on sporting merit’

Taking the total number of teams from 32 to 36 in the Champions League, the biggest change will see a transformation from the traditional group stage to a single league phase including all participating teams.

Every club will now be guaranteed a minimum of eight league-stage games against eight different opponents (four home games, four away) rather than the previous six matches against three teams, played on a home-and-away basis.

The top eight sides in the league will qualify automatically for the knockout stages, while the teams finishing in ninth to 24th place will compete in a two-legged play-off to secure a place in the last 16 of the competition.

Teams ranked 25-36 are eliminated from all competitions.

Which teams have qualified for the league phase?

It is the first time since 1992 that Europe's elite competition has seen such a revamp
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It is the first time since 1992 that Europe’s elite competition has seen such a revamp

So far, the following sides are guaranteed to enter at the league phase.

Shakhtar Donetsk and Benfica have qualified by virtue of the Champions League and Europa League winners having already qualified via their domestic league performance or as a result of their country’s collective performance in Europe this season.

  • UEFA Europa League winners: Atalanta
  • England: Man City, Arsenal, Liverpool, Aston Villa
  • Spain: Real Madrid, Barcelona, Girona, Atletico Madrid
  • Germany: Leverkusen, Stuttgart, Bayern, Leipzig
  • Italy: Inter Milan, AC Milan, Bologna, Juventus
  • France: Paris Saint-Germain, Monaco, Brest
  • Netherlands: PSV Eindhoven, Feyenoord
  • Portugal: Sporting CP
  • Belgium: Club Brugge
  • Scotland: Celtic
  • Austria: Sturm Graz
  • European Performance Spots: Roma (Ita), Dortmund (Ger)
  • Champions League winner rebalancing: Shakhtar Donetsk (Ukr)
  • Europa League winner rebalancing: Benfica (Por)

What about the qualifying rounds?

Seven teams will enter via winning a two-legged play-off.

Rangers are entering the third qualifying round, with the draw for that stage being held on July 22.

Philippe Clement’s side are one of the seeded clubs along with Slavia Prague, Red Bull Salzburg and Lille. Should Rangers prevail, they will have their sights set on the draw for the play-off round on August 5.

The first legs then take place on August 20-21 with the returns legs on August 27-28.

When is the draw for the league phase?

The draw for the league phase will be held on August 29.

Which nations gained the extra places?

Italy Soccer Serie A
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Bologna – fifth in Serie A – will be part of next season’s competition

Two leagues – Italy and Germany – have been rewarded with an extra place in next season’s Champions League based on performance in Europe this season.

This was based around the best average coefficient of all teams taking part in Europe for each country. The two leagues with the best score received an extra place.

Atalanta have secured at least a fourth-placed finish in the Italian top flight following a 3-0 victory over Torino last weekend.

The result also ruled out the possibility of a sixth Serie A spot qualifying for the Champions League next season.

Could Germany have six teams?

Yes. Eintracht Frankfurt – who finished sixth in the Bundesliga – will enter the league phase if Borussia Dortmund win the Champions League final against Real Madrid at Wembley.

Otherwise, they enter the Europa League league phase.

How are the fixtures decided?

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Sky Sports News chief reporter Kaveh Solhekol shares why UEFA has changed the formats of its club competitions and how they will work.

Clubs will no longer play three opponents twice – home and away.

Instead, they will face fixtures against eight different teams, playing half of those matches at home and half of them away.

To determine the eight different opponents, teams will initially be ranked in four seeding pots. Each team will be drawn to play two opponents from each of these pots, playing one match against a team from each pot at home, and one away.

When are the 2024/25 Champions League league-stage matches?

From next season, a new format will be in play
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From next season, a new format will be in play for the Champions League

  • Matchday 1: September 17-19, 2024
  • Matchday 2: October 1/2, 2024
  • Matchday 3: October 22/23, 2024
  • Matchday 4: November 5/6, 2024
  • Matchday 5: November 26/27, 2024
  • Matchday 6: December 10/11, 2024
  • Matchday 7: January 21/22, 2025
  • Matchday 8: January 29, 2025

When are the 2024/25 Champions League knockout stages?

  • Knockout round play-offs: February 11/12 and February 18/19, 2025
  • Round of 16: March 4/5 and March 11/12, 2025
  • Quarter-finals: April 8/9 and April 15/16, 2025
  • Semi-finals: April 29/30 and May 6/7, 2025
  • Final: May 21, 2025

Where is the Champions League final being held in 2025?

The 2024/25 UEFA Champions League season will take place in Munich at the Allianz Arena on May 31, 2025.

Europa League and Europa Conference League changing too?

Berat Djimsiti, center, holds up Europa League trophy as he celebrates with his teammates at the end of the Europa League final between Atalanta and Bayer Leverkusen
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Atalanta won the Europa League during the 2023/24 season

Similar changes will be made to the Europa League and Europa Conference League formats, with 36 teams in each.

Teams in the Europa League will have eight matches against eight different opponents in the league phase.

In the Europa Conference League – renamed the UEFA Conference League – teams will have six matches against six different opponents in the league phase. The UEFA Conference League games will be played between September and December.

The knockout phases of the competitions will take place through the second half of the season and culminate at the end of the campaign, as they do now.

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