UEFA May Change the Champions League Format to Swiss System


UEFA has called for a meeting with European stakeholders to review the existing format of the UEFA Champions League, proposing a new swiss-system for the 2024-2025 season.

A Swiss-system tournament is a non-eliminating tournament format that features a fixed number of rounds of competition, but considerably fewer than for a round-robin tournament; thus each competitor (team or individual) does not play all the other competitors. Competitors meet one-on-one in each round and are paired using a set of rules designed to ensure that each competitor plays opponents with a similar running score, but does not play the same opponent more than once. The winner is the competitor with the highest aggregate points earned in all rounds. All competitors play in each round unless there is an odd number of them.

The Swiss system is used for competitions in which there are too many entrants for a full round-robin (all-play-all) to be feasible, and eliminating any competitors before the end of the tournament is undesirable.

According to these circumstances, UEFA also debate to increase the tournament from 125 games to 225, and introducing 36 teams in the group stages. Currently, 32 teams are separated in to eight groups of four, with the top two from each qualifying for the knockout stages.

Increasing the number of games would also mean more games that can be sold to TV broadcasters and increased revenue for the clubs and UEFA as well. But the main problem with this new system is to find an extra matchdays for the group stages. The calendar is already extremely tight even in normal year and complaints are rising about the strain being placed on high-level athletes.

Discussions are continuing and nothing has been decided yet.

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