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New rules for the UEFA Champions League Premier League clubs will be reinforced from next season with direct entry into the group stage of the Champions League

New rules for the UEFA Champions League
Premier League clubs will be reinforced from next season with direct entry into the group stage of the Champions League


The new rules introduced by UEFA mean that fourth place in the Premier League will result in an automatic qualification for the group stage of the best European club competition starting next season.

Under the existing competition rules, each team that finished fourth in the league would need to qualify for the competition via a tricky, two-legged playoff game. However, 26 teams will automatically qualify for the group stage. Last year's winners of the Champions League and the Europa League have now also secured their qualification for the last 32.

The downside is that if two teams that land in front of England's top four win the Champions League and the Europa League, then the fourth-placed team falls into the Europa League.

Other changes include player-friendly changes that aim to address the concerns of clubs with an overloaded calendar or a reduced list of players.

Clubs can register three new eligible players without restrictions after the group stage. In addition, players bought in the January transfer window can enter European competitions, regardless of who they played before. In another step, a fourth substitute is allowed in co-games, but only during extra time. And 23 players (instead of the current 18) can be called in game teams.

There are also staggered kick-off times with two games on Tuesday and two on Wednesday in the group stage, which start at 1755 GMT. Other games start at 2000 GMT. All games of the last match day are played simultaneously.

So who are the 26 teams that automatically qualify for the Champions League in 2018-19-19?

  • UEFA Champions League holders (1)
  • UEFA Europa League holders (1)
  • Top Four from Spain, Germany, England and Italy (16)
  • Top two from France and Russia (4)
  • Masters of Portugal, Ukraine, Belgium and Turkey (4).
  • In the current table, the Champions League contenders for 2018-19 are listed below. (Those who have already qualified are in bold).

Spain: Barcelona, ​​Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid and Valencia
Germany: Bayern Munich, Schalke, Dortmund, Bayer Leverkusen
England: Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham

Italy: Juventus, Napoli, Roma, Lazio
France: PSG, Monaco
Russia: locomotive Moscow, Spartak Moskva
Portugal: Benfica
Ukraine: Shakhtar Donetsk
Belgium: Club Brugge
Turkey: Galatasaray

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