UEFA have officially announced the new changes to the Champions League which will begin in the 2024/2025 season.
Last year, UEFA confirmed plans to change the format of the Champions League, (via The Independent) but the new rules were still to be discussed.
After the controversy of the European Super League proposals, many were sceptical about what changes UEFA were going to implement. Since 2003, there have been no changes to the Champions League, but we’re set to see a new format in 2024.
32 teams usually take part in the Champions League group stage, but this will now be changed to 36. The ‘group stage’ of the competition will rank all 36 teams from 1 to 36. Teams will get three points for a win and one for a draw, as standard, and this will determine where they are ranked.
The top eight teams in the ranking will automatically advance into the last 16, then the teams between 9th and 24th will enter a play off. The remaining teams will then be eliminated from the competition.
Instead of playing three teams, home and away, every club in the final 36 of the competition will play eight different teams, four home games and four away games.
The changes in full can be found on the UEFA website.
Playing eight different teams in the early stages of the Champions League could make for exciting viewing for fans. However, fixture lists around Europe have been heavily congested over the last few years, and these changes are only going to make things worse.