EUROPA LEAGUE Qualifying Stage
The UEFA Europa League is a prestigious annual football competition sponsored by the Union of European Football Associations and is regarded as the second league in world football. The competition is composed of eight teams from all over Europe with the champions getting the European Cup title. This season’s winners qualify to the finals of the competition, played in its own competition in the summer. The competition has earned great popularity all over Europe, apart from among fans of football. It has also added a great revenue to the participating teams and clubs and therefore there is a great deal of money involved.
The competition is divided into two parts: the Super League and the UEFA Cup. The qualification for the latter consists of a play-off between the top two finishers from each group and from the bottom of the table. The other way to qualify for the playoffs is to finish in third place or better, with four wins or less from your group. The four teams qualifying for the playoffs are then placed in separate groups in the EUROPA LEAGUE.
The champions league is composed of the absolute giants of European football; the European Champions, the most decorated team in the whole of Europe and the holders of the most number of major trophies. The contenders for the European champions league include the Chelsea, Manchester United, Barcelona, PSV Eindhoven, Real Madrid and Milan. These four teams have a special rivalry and have qualified for the competition for several years now, although only Chelsea and Real Madrid have secured a place so far. The other top sides from the continent are Besiktas, Inter Milan, Sporting Lisbon, Schalke and Arsenal. These are a few of the many other teams that can qualify for the EUROPA LEAGUE.
As for the cup competitions, there is only the UEFA Cup, which has no relation to the European league or the Champions League. This is the competition that determines the qualification spots for the EUROPA LEAGUE round, where four teams will qualify from each qualifying group, which consist of 16 clubs. The knockout rounds consist of four semi finals and a final, where the top two teams from each group will progress to the quarter finals, while the other teams will get eliminated. This means that there will be an extra time added to the actual tournament, giving each team another chance to show their abilities. There will be extra time added to the cup tournaments than there will be for the group stages.
For the teams that qualify for the EUROPA LEAGUE, there are certain set of rules that must be followed. These include having minimum scores for each game, as well as maintaining the correct formation throughout the entire match. Each team has to play all its matches on grass, as well as playing in a minimum of three corners of the stadium. The matches are scheduled every four weeks, with the first matches being played on weekdays.
Some of the participating teams for the EUROPA LEAGUE are Astra Giurgiu, Benfica Lisbon, FC Barcelona, Sevilla FC, Fiorentina Lisbon, Hercules FC, NK Zagreb, Sporting Lisbon, SL Benfica, Arsenal FC, Olympique Lyonnais, Vitoria Guimola, Zenit St. Petersburg, FC Viktoria Prague, Benfica Budejovice, FC Sparta Denmark, Malmoondoners, CSKA Moscow, Beswick FC, Celtic FC, Lokomotiv Marseille. The champions league and the cups have a special place in the heart of Europe. Some of the teams that have represented the EUROPA LEAGUE are AC Milan, Bordeaux, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United, Nottingham Forest, Rangers, Olympique de Marseille, Fiorentina, Reading, Norwich City, Toulouse, Watford, Reading FC, Wolves, Wrexham, Crystal Palace and Schalke.