The Executive Committee of the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) has approved the final format and access list for European club competitions, granting two Champions League berths to associations with the best collective performance by their clubs in the previous season in 2024–25.
UEFA also altered the qualification requirements for Europe's premier club competition by eliminating access based on club coefficient, so denying historically successful teams the opportunity to compete even if they did not finish in the qualifying positions.
Tuesday, the final format was agreed upon in Vienna.
UEFA stated in a statement that the final two spots would be awarded to the associations whose clubs had the best collective performance in the previous season (total number of points achieved divided by the number of participating clubs).
"Those two associations will earn one place for the club best ranked in the domestic league behind the UEFA Champions League positions."
If the rule were implemented this season, England and the Netherlands would receive an additional slot, and the fifth-place Premier League side would qualify along with the top four teams.
With the number of teams expanding from 32 to 36, UEFA announced that one spot will be awarded to the "club ranked third in the championship of the association in fifth position in the UEFA national association ranking."
France's Ligue 1 is currently rated fifth, and only the top two teams qualify for the first stage; the third-placed team must compete in qualification rounds.
The final seat on the "Champions Path." will be allocated to another domestic champion.
Aleksandr Ceferin, president of UEFA, stated that the organization was committed to "qualification based on sporting merit."
"I am pleased that it was a unanimous decision of the UEFA Executive Committee, with the European Club Association, European Leagues and National Associations all agreeing with the proposal made," he said.
"Another indication that European football has never been more united Thus, qualification will continue to be based only on athletic performance, and all clubs will continue to aspire to participate."
Additionally, the number of matches per side in the new beginning league stage will be lowered from ten to eight. Instead of the current home-and-away schedule of six games against three opponents, each club will now face eight different opponents.
"The top eight teams in the league phase qualify for the knockouts while teams finishing 9th-24th will play two-legged playoffs to secure a last-16 spot," UEFA stated.
In the league phase of the Europa League and Europa Conference League, there will also be 36 teams.