MINSK, 11 May (BelTA) - The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) has approved the final format of the UEFA Champions League with the participation of 36 clubs as of the 2024/25 season, the UEFA press service informs.
The biggest change will see a transformation from the traditional group stage to a single league phase including all participating teams. The number of teams will increase from 32 to 36. Every club will now be guaranteed a minimum of 8 league stage games against 8 different opponents (four home games, four away). The top eight sides in the league will qualify automatically for the knockout stage, while the teams finishing in ninth to 24th place will compete in a two-legged play-off to secure their path to the last 16 of the competition. Similar format changes will also be applied to the UEFA Europa League and UEFA Europa Conference League.
“Today's decisions conclude an extensive consultation process during which we listened to the ideas of fans, players, coaches, national associations, clubs and leagues to name but a few, with the aim to find the best solution for the development and success of European football, both domestically and on the international club stage. We are convinced that the format chosen strikes the right balance and that it will improve the competitive balance and generate solid revenues that can be distributed to clubs, leagues and into grassroots football,” UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin said.