Europa Conference League: All you need to know

Europa Conference League: All you need to know

When the UEFA Europa Conference League kicks off next season, it will be the first time in more than 20 years that there will be a third season-long UEFA men's football club competition.

We'll go through who'll be involved and when the games will take place.

Who enters the UEFA Europa Conference League?

Over the course of the season, 184 teams will compete, with at least one team from each of the 55 associations and 46 clubs transferring from the UEFA Champions League or UEFA Europa League.

There will be three qualifying rounds and a play-off round prior to the group stage (split into a main path, and a champions path for those transferring from the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League champions path).

No teams qualify directly for the group stage, with the 32 teams consisting of:

  • 17 teams from the UEFA Europa Conference League main path
  • 5 teams from the UEFA Europa Conference League champions path
  • 10 teams eliminated in the UEFA Europa League play-offs

How will it work?

Following the knockout round play-offs, the round of 16, quarter-finals, semi-finals, and final, there will be eight groups of four teams.

The eight group winners automatically go through to the last 16. Additional knockout round playoffs will then be played before the round of 16 between the eight group runners-up and the third-ranked teams of the UEFA Europa League groups.

When are the games?

    • First qualifying round draw: 15 June
    • Second qualifying round draw: 16 June
    • First qualifying round: 8 & 15 July
    • Third qualifying round draw: 19 July
    • Second qualifying round: 22 & 29 July
    • Play-off round draw: 2 August
    • Third qualifying round: 5 & 12 August
    • Play-offs: 19 & 26 August
    • Group stage draw: 27 August
    • Group stage: 16 & 30 September, 21 October, 4 & 25 November, 9 December
    • Knockout round play-off draw: 13 December
    • Knockout round play-offs: 17 & 24 February
    • Round of 16 draw: 25 February
    • Round of 16: 10 & 17 March
    • Quarter-finals & Semi-final draw: 18 March
    • Quarter-finals: 7 & 14 April
    • Semi-finals: 28 April & 5 May
    • Final: 25 May (National Arena, Tirana)

What do the winners get?

The winner will gain a place in the following season's UEFA Europa League group stage if they have not qualified for the UEFA Champions League via their domestic competition.