By Tony Attwood
Several newspapers are daring to venture into the “All you need to know” department for the Europa League draw, and based on what people like the Daily Beast are saying, that is precious little. In fact the less you know about it, it seems, the better, at least as far as they are concerned.
But we shall battle on here with some real news, so let us try this. The list of clubs that have already automatically qualified each shown with their country, and their co-efficient, which shows us as the top seed.
Arsenal (England) 93.000
Chelsea (England) 82.000
Bayer Leverkusen (Germany) 66.000
Dynamo Kyiv (Ukraine) 62.000
Salzburg (Austria) 55.500
Villarreal (Spain) 52.000
Anderlecht (Belgium) 48.000
Lazio (Italy) 41.000
Sporting CP (Portugal) 40.000
Marseille (France) 32.000
PAOK Athens (Greece) 29.500
AC Milan (Italy) 28.000
Fenerbahçe (Turkey) 23.500
Krasnodar (Russia) 23.500
Real Betis (Spain) 21.399
BATE Borisov (Moldova) 20.500
Dinamo Zagreb (Croatia) 17.500
Eintracht Frankfurt (Germany) 14.285
Spartak Moskva (Russia) 13.500
Standard Liège (Belgium) 12.500
Zürich (Switzerland) 12.000
Rennes (France) 11.283
Vorskla (Ukaine) 8.226
Slavia Praha (Czech Republic) 7.500
Akhisar Belediyespor (Turkey) 7.160
Jablonec (Czech Republic) 6.035
Vidi (Hungary) 4.250
Now this year there is a change because all teams that are eliminated in the Champions League qualifying rounds will get a second chance in the Europa League, not just those who come third.
One oddity to notice at once is that the current holders are not in the League because Atlético Madrid qualified for the 2018–19 UEFA Champions League, by winning the trophy. They could however come back to the Europa if they finish third in their group in the Champions League group stage.
There are all sorts of oddities in who gets in and who doesn’t. Several clubs who qualified failed to get a Uefa licence, ususally because of their ground. At least two teams (one from Albania and one from Armenia) were thrown out for match fixing. Derry City in Northern Ireland take part as a representative of the Republic of Ireland. Bangor were refused entry, and so we welcomed Bala Town to the competition.
Of all the clubs who have meandered through the qualifying rounds, or entered them at the last, those left play their last qualifying game tonight, to join the list of those automatically qualified. The first leg score is shown. The three British teams still in the qualifiers are shown in bold.
|Olimpija Ljubljana||Spartak Trnava||0–2|
|F91 Dudelange||CFR Cluj||2–0|
|Torpedo Kutaisi||Ludogorets Razgrad||0–1|
|Sarpsborg 08||Maccabi Tel Aviv||3–1|
|Zenit Saint Petersburg||Molde||3–1|
|Zorya Luhansk||RB Leipzig||0–0|
The draw for the groups will then be held tomorrow in Monaco.
By that stage, if I have got my adding up right, there will be 48 teams and they are to be drawn into twelve groups of four, with the usual rule that you can’t have two teams from one country in the same group.
This is where the co-efficients come in as this is how the groups are sorted. One pot for the top 12 clubs, one of the next and so on. As always everyone plays each other in the group home and away and the top two from each group go into the round of 32 along with teams knocked out from the Champs League group stage.
The matchdays are 20 September, 4 October, 25 October, 8 November, 29 November, and 13 December 2018.
I trust that is all perfectly clear. If not, try it this way… there are 48 teams in the League group stages…
- 17 teams like Arsenal enter for the first time tomorrow.
- 21 winners of the play-off round enter alongside them
- The six losers of the Champions League play off round enter
- Four Losers of the 2018–19 Champions League third qualifying round enter.
There. That is the best I can do to create a jolly clear thing on a perfectly clear day.
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