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Two Legged Semi Finals To Be Scrapped As Part Of Major Champions League Revamp

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Two Legged Semi Finals To Be Scrapped As Part Of Major Champions League Revamp

Semi finals in the Champions League are set to become one-legged as part of the competition's revamp.

Since the European Cup was introduced way back in the 1955/56 season, when Real Madrid won the first of 13 titles, its format has included semi-finals played over two legs.

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Ten years later and UEFA brought in the away goals ruling, which has since been abolished this term.

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But going forward, according to Martin Ziegler from The Times, Champions League semi-finals will be a one-off fixture.

No official stance from UEFA has been made as of yet but president Aleksander Ceferin has endorsed the idea in the past and the European Club Association (ECA) are said to be leaning towards giving their seal of approval.

Image: PA
Image: PA

The European Leagues organisation would need to give the green light to the change, which would include a “week of football” whereby semi-finals and the final are played in one city in the same week.

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The feeling is that extra excitement and drama would be added with the one-legged affairs, before the final takes place shortly after.

Image: PA
Image: PA

The Nations League international tournament has seen semi-finals and finals played in the same country over a five-day period.

In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the quarter finals onwards were played in Lisbon in August and Nasser Al-Khelaifi, PSG's president and the chairman of the ECA, went on record to say players from his club enjoyed the set-up.

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Image: PA
Image: PA

The proposal for a single city to host the three fixtures would be challenging because of the amount of fans descending and is likely only be achievable with leading locations like London, Paris, Madrid, Berlin, Istanbul and Rome to name a few.

Image: PA
Image: PA

The axing of two-legged semis would come into play for the 2024/25 season, by which point there will be an all-new format.

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Instead of the traditional eight groups, there will be one 36-team league - with the top eight teams reaching the next round.

A new round of play-offs will decide the other teams, with clubs placed from ninth to 16th facing a side placed from 17th to 24th in a two-legged tie.

Every team will play a minimum of 10 games, half home and half away in the league format.

Featured Image Credit: Image: PA

Topics: Champions League, UEFA

Josh Lawless
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