The threat grew heavier and heavier.
Faced with the strong desire of the powerful ECA (the European Association of Clubs) to regain control of the business and the immense financial manna of European football and to set up a private Superleague in place of the current League of champions, UEFA has decided to fight back.
According to the Team, the European body is in the process of finalizing a reform of its queen competition.
This project could be adopted as early as next month by an executive committee and implemented from the 2024-2025 season.
This new formula would increase the number of participants to 36 against 32 currently, which would increase the number of days to 10 (against 6).
The number of matches would increase to… 225, an increase of 100 matches, and would mark the end of the group and two-way system in the first round.
Twice as many matches
In detail, this new model - called "the Swiss system" - will therefore offer double the number of matches in the first round (180 against 96 currently) and a sort of 36-team championship, with 10 matches for each against different opponents. of a varied level.
There could be shocks from the start of the campaign.
This reform seems to be good news for French football, currently 5th in the European ranking, which would see the number of representatives go from 3 (2 + 1) to 4 (3 + 1).
The champion, his runner-up and the 3rd would directly qualify for the new group stage while the 4th should go through the third preliminary round followed by a jump-off.
To have a quartet in the final table, however, France must not downgrade in the UEFA rankings and retain its 5th place behind the untouchables Spain, England, Italy and Germany.
France is currently closely followed by Portugal.
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This is not the first time that the flagship competition has tried to evolve with varying degrees of success - between 1999 and 2003, UEFA had set up two interminable group phases which had destabilized and displeased some of the viewers and football fans - but this time time was running out and the powerful clubs had to be satisfied.