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New Euro club competition down to high demand, says Uefa chief

 

By Robert Jones

There will be a third European club competition from 2021, Uefa have announced.

President Aleksander Ceferin said a "widespread demand" for participation at European level had led to the formation of the new tournament, which will sit under the Champions and Europa Leagues.

With a working title of 'UEL2', the 32-team competition will start at the beginning of the new Uefa cycle, which runs from 2021-2024.

Eight groups of four will be whittled down to a round of 16, following a play-off between the second-placed teams and those who finish third in the Europa League.

Quarter-finals and semi-finals will then follow, before a 141st game, the final.

"The new Uefa club competition makes Uefa's club competitions more inclusive than ever before," Ceferin said. "There will be more matches for more clubs, with more associations represented in the group stages.

"There was a widespread demand by all clubs to increase their chances of participating more regularly in European competition."

The winner of the new tournament will then earn a place in the Europa League.

Uefa added that the fixtures will be played on a Thursday.

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