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UEFA drop ‘leapfrogging’ plan for Champions League qualification

UEFA has dropped its controversial ‘leapfrogging’ plan for Champions League qualification, but is still planning to award ‘one or two places’ based on a co-efficient ranking.

European football’s governing body is finalising changes to the Champions League, which is set to expand from 32 to 36 teams ahead of the 2024/25 campaign.


Among the proposals had been a controversial ‘leapfrogging’ plan, in which teams that had performed well in past European seasons were awarded a place in the event of failing to qualify through their domestic finish.

The plans could have seen the side finishing sixth or seventh in the Premier League, for example, qualify for the Champions League at the expense of the fifth-placed team if in possession of a superior co-efficient – calculated by performances in Europe over the previous five seasons.

The Times are reporting that UEFA have now abandoned those plans, which received an angered response from several sides in the belief the proposals safe-guarded Europe’s elite clubs.

UEFA are still proposing two positions in the competition for highly-ranked sides in terms of co-efficient, but teams will not be able to leapfrog domestic rivals into the competition.

The other two places are likely to be awarded to Ligue 1, who have two automatic qualifiers at present, and to the league champion with the highest ranking of a country which does not have an automatic qualification spot. A final decision on the changes will be made in May.

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