UEFA set to launch third European club competition

UEFA set to launch third European club competition”

UEFA could be set to announce a third European competition from 2021 along with the Champions League and the Europa League.

"Pending approval of the UEFA ExCo, the "green light" has been given to introduce a third competition, bringing the overall number of clubs to 96, as of the 2021/22 season", Agnelli said.

Agnelli sits on the UEFA executive committee and is also the chairman of Italian club Juventus.

With 48 sides now involved in the Europa League group stage, that would likely mean that competition being reduced to 32 teams, with the same number competing in the Champions League group stage and the new competition. Agnelli also repeated his call from previous year for a drastic overhaul of the worldwide match calendar, which is drawn up by global soccer body Federation Internationale de Football Association and allocates dates for national team games.

UEFA and European clubs have previously agreed not to change the Champions League until 2024, but wanted to modify the Europa League in 2021 when a new round of broadcast and sponsor deals begin.

But instead of that they will now have to play their first home game of this season's Europa League group stage, against Eintracht Frankfurt on September 20, in an empty Stade Velodrome.

The 32-team format of the Champions League is to remain unchanged.

"It is nearly obvious that a third competition will be added".

Clubs from smaller nations in Europe are expected to take part in the as-yet unnamed competition and the matches will likely be broadcast on online platforms exclusively. It would mark a return to three European club competitions after the Cup Winners' Cup was abolished at the end of the 1998-99 season.

Back then, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said proposals were "just discussions".

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