How Liverpool Champions League win would impact Tottenham Hotspur or Arsenal in Premier League fifth place finish
The red half of Merseyside is already looking forward to yet another appearance in the final of European football’s premier club cup competition.
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Liverpool are now just 90 minutes away from becoming champions of Europe for a seventh time after a dramtic win at Villarreal on Tuesday night.
Jurgen Klopp’s men looked in complete control of the semi-final tie after they claimed a 2-0 win in the first leg at Anfield last week.
But their La Liga opponents produced a fine first-half display to level up the aggregate score thanks to an early strike from Boulaye Dia and a goal from former Arsenal midfielder Francis Coquelin.
However, the Reds got themselves to within sight of a third final appearance inside five years as Fabinho, Luis Diaz and Sadio Mane all netted in the space of 12 second-half minutes.
The full-time whistle brought jubilant scenes on and off the pitch and all eyes now turn towards the second leg of the other semi-final between Real Madrid and Manchester City.
But how could a Liverpool Champions League win impact on the Premier League’s qualification spots for European football’s elite club competition?
How does Champions League qualification work in the Premier League?
In normal circumstances, the top four teams from the Premier League qualify for the group stage proper while the team who finished fifth qualifying for the group stage of the UEFA Europa League along with the side that wins the FA Cup.
The EFL Cup winners qualify for the playoff stages of the UEFA Europa Conference League.
However, things are usually not so straightforward with the team who wins the FA Cup or EFL Cup usually qualifying for Europe through the league.
As per the Premier League website:
- if the FA Cup winners finish in the top five of the Premier League, their UEL group stage place will go to the next-highest ranked team not qualified for UEFA competitions in the Premier League.
- If the EFL Cup winners finish in the top five of the Premier League (or top six if (a) happens), their UECL playoff place will go to the next-highest ranked team not qualified for UEFA competitions in the Premier League.
As for Champions League qualification, that can be impacted if a team who finishes in the top four of the Premier League also wins either the Champions League or Europa League.
Should a Premier League club win the Champions League they will automatically qualify for the group stage of next season’s competition regardless of their league finishing position and the same goes for the Europa League.
However, if a club wins the Champions League or Europa League and finishes in the top four, their qualification for the UCL through their league position is not transferred to another team.
That means a Liverpool win in this season’s Champions League Final would NOT mean the fifth placed Premier League club landing a place in next season’s competition.
How many Premier League teams can qualify for the Champions League?
The Premier League can only send a maximum of five teams to the Champions League.
In normal circumstances, the places will go to the teams who finish in the top four of the league but a fifth place will go to a side if they win either the Champions League or Europa League and do not finish in the top four.
In the incredibly unlikely circumstance that teams from the Premier League were to win both the Champions League and Europa League and neither finished inside the top four of the table then the team who finishes fourth would NOT gain a place in the Champions League and would instead drop into the Europa League.