Potential new ruling could provide Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham and West Ham renewed security in their dreams of securing Champions League qualification. The European Club Association (ECA) has been presented with new qualification rules for the Champions League, according to The Athletic, which will affect the quartet of London-based Premier League sides.
For years Premier League teams have become accustomed to the current qualification model which rewards teams accordingly for their league finish.
Generally, first, second, third and fourth are handed an automatic place into a 32-team Champions League-proper but, under a potential new model, that could all change. From 2024/25, UEFA will increase the number of competing sides in the Champions league-proper to 32 to 36.
The competition will use the so-called ‘Swiss-model’ which involves every team playing in a single league instead of a standard the group stage, with a guarantee of at least 10 games apiece. Two of the four new spots up for grabs will be handed to teams with the best historical performance who finished outside the Champions League spots in their domestic league the previous season.
The third to another to the fifth best-performing league in Europe and one to the ‘Champions’ pathway in qualification. This could mean that as many as two extra slots could go to teams from the Premier League, La Liga, Serie A or the Bundesliga, or any other European nation.
In short, the new ruling could provide Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham and West Ham renewed security in their dreams of Champions League qualification. But, on the other side of the coin, the Champions League as we know looks to seemingly transform into something akin to the European Super League with a shiny sticker on the front.
The Athletic claim that UEFA secretary general Giorgio Marchetti tabled this to Europe’s leading sides. The report claims that the new model is expected to be discussed by UEFA in April before being given the green light in May, ahead of being introduced in the 2024-25 season.