Champions League

Europa winners to get boost

2013-05-24 16:10
Europa League (File)
Cape Town - Winners of Europe's second tier intercontinental football tournament, the Europa League, will have more to play for in future seasons.

This after UEFA on Friday confirmed that from the 2014/15 season the winners of the Europa League will gain automatic entry into the following season's Champions League.

According to the Sky Sports website, the new ruling was ratified by the UEFA congress in London on Friday. It means the winners of the Europa League will in two seasons' time will compete in the 2015/16 Champions League.

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According to the website, Europa League winners and Champions League winners will no longer take one of the places assigned to their domestic leagues if they finish outside of the Champions League qualifying spots.

That means England could have five Champions League places in future if one of their clubs lift the Europa League and finish outside the top four in the league.

But five places would be a maximum, so in the unlikely event of two clubs from the same country winning both competitions, and both finish outside the domestic qualifying spot, only one could qualify.

"As was proven with this year's magnificent final, the UEFA Europa League has gone from strength to strength, but we wanted to give clubs a further incentive, so that all of them play with a desire to win the competition," UEFA president Michel Platini said.

"By guaranteeing access to the UEFA Champions League for the winners, we are convinced that the UEFA Europa League will increase its appeal for clubs and their supporters."

Chelsea won last season's Champions League, but were eliminated from this season's group phase, which meant they had to play in the Europa League. But they made amends by winning the competition, becoming the first team ever to hold both trophies at the same time.

They will lose their title as Champions League winners when Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund meet in the final at Wembley on Saturday.

Read more on:    europa league  |  soccer

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