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The Champions League is one of the most prestigious and exciting competitions in the world of soccer and has a huge audience, even outside Europe. That’s why it’s increasingly common to find people who want to know all about the Champions League and follow the thrilling matches that are already a hallmark of the competition;

One of the main examples, of matches full of drama and memorable moments, is Barcelona’s unforgettable epic comeback against PSG in the 2016-2017 season;

In the second leg of the round of 16, Barcelona needed to overturn a 4-0 deficit suffered in the first leg against PSG. With an impressive performance, Barcelona won 6-1 at home, advancing to the quarterfinals.

Now that’s a game worth reviewing, neh? Here’s a video of the best moments of the match!

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What is the European Champions League?

The Champions League was created in 1955, and is an annual soccer club competition organized by UEFA, which involves the best teams in Europe, and is considered the most prestigious club competition in the world of soccer.

The history of the Champions League begins in 1955, when French sports journalist Gabriel Hanot proposed the creation of a competition between the champion clubs of the main European leagues;

The first edition took place in the 1955-1956 season and 16 teams took part, crowning Real Madrid as champions.

In 1992, the competition was renamed the UEFA Champions League, when it adopted the current format of a group stage followed by a knockout stage.

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It’s worth noting that the UEFA is the Union of European Football Associations, which works in a similar way to CONMEBOL, or the South American Football Confederation, bringing together various countries and their clubs, organizing competitions and establishing rules for them;

But back to understanding everything about the Champions League, the competition was initially created for the exclusive participation of the champions of the European national leagues to compete against each other;

However, over the years, the format has expanded to include the best teams from various leagues.

Also read: How to bet on the Champions League at Betano in 2024

How does the Champions League work?

The Champions League is contested by clubs from all over the European continent. Participants are determined on the basis of the performance of their national leagues in the previous season and the coefficient established by UEFA, with the best teams from each country guaranteeing their place in the competition.

In other words, the countries with the most successful clubs and strongest leagues generally have more guaranteed places in the Champions League.

Once the teams that will take part in the season are listed, the competition begins with a group stage, where the clubs are divided up and play back-to-back matches against the other members of the group.

The two best teams in each group advance to the knockout stage, with back-to-back matches consisting of the eighth round, quarterfinals and semifinals

The grand final is played over just one match and whoever wins the match takes the trophy.

In short, the way the Champions League currently works is as follows:

How will the new Champions League format work in 2025?

Having understood everything about the Champions League and how it works, you need to be aware that the rules of the Champions League are going to change for next season, and it’s important to keep an eye on what’s going to happen and how the new Champions League format is going to work:

  • There will be 36 participating clubs, no longer 32;
  • The teams will be divided into four leagues (without groups)
  • Each club will play eight games against two other teams from each of the four pots.
  • The top eight teams advance straight to the round of 16.
  • The teams from ninth to 24th place will play-off. The rest will be eliminated.

From the round of 16 onwards, the rules of the Champions League continue with one-way and return matches, except for the final, which is held in a one-off match at a neutral venue.

In short, the rules of the Champions League in the new format have the following changes

  • Aumento do número de times: a competição passará de 32 para 36 times.
  • Formato “Liga” ao invés de grupos: os 36 times serão divididos em um único grupo grande, onde cada um jogará contra 8 adversários em partidas de ida e volta. 
  • Mais vagas para países com melhor desempenho: as duas melhores federações no ranking da UEFA receberão uma vaga adicional na Champions League.
  • Acesso mais fácil para campeões nacionais: mais campeões nacionais de ligas menores terão acesso direto à fase de grupos da Champions League.

How is the Champions League formed?

The formation of the Champions League is based on the performance of the clubs in their respective national leagues. The countries with the strongest leagues and best performances in the previous competition have the most places. Clubs that have won other competitions, such as the Champions League itself in the previous season, also have direct entry into the group stage.

Undoubtedly, one of the biggest curiosities about the Champions League is the selection of the teams that will play in the competition.

This is a question that raises doubts, especially among those who are just starting to follow the games. So read on to find out all about the Champions League.

Number of vacancies per country

The number of places for each country in the Champions League is defined based on the evaluation of performance and the strength of the domestic championships of each nation;

This way, the federations with the best performance in European competitions in recent years receive four places.

The federations with intermediate positions in the ranking have three places, while the following ones have two or even one;

In most cases, the national league champion qualifies directly for the Champions League group stage. The runners-up and, in some cases, the third, fourth and fifth-placed teams can also qualify for the group stage.

Other forms of classification

Still within the rules of the Champions League, it is possible to find other ways to enter the championship.

For example, the winner of the Europa League in the previous season has a place in the Champions League group stage.

With the changes to the Champions League rules, another four places remain open and, according to UEFA, they will be distributed as follows:

The first extra place will go to the third-placed team in the federation’s championship that occupies fifth position on the access list, according to Uefa’s coefficients.

The second slot will be awarded to a national champion, increasing the number of national champion clubs taking part in the qualifying phase from four to five.

The third and fourth extra places will go to the federations with the best collective performance from their clubs in the previous season.

Curiosities about the Champions League

Who are the greatest Champions League winners?

In the list of the top 5 Champions League winners are:

  1. Real Madrid (ESP): 14 títulos
  2. Milan (ITA): 7 títulos
  3. Liverpool (ING): 6 títulos
  4. Bayern de Munique (ALE): 6 títulos
  5. Barcelona (ESP): 5 títulos

Real Madrid are the record holders in the Champions League, with an impressive number of victories;

The Galacticos, as they are known, have won the trophy on several occasions throughout their glorious history in European soccer.

Which athlete has won the Champions League the most times?

The record for the most individual titles in the Champions League is shared by several players, who have five titles to their name:

  • Cristiano Ronaldo
  • Karim Benzema
  • Dani Carvajal
  • Luka Modrić

When does the Champions League season start?

The Champions League starts in late August or early September and usually ends with the final in May or June of the following year;

Now you have a guide to everything about the Champions League, how it works, its greatest champions, its history and, of course, its rules.

With the best teams and athletes in the world, the championship is much more than just a soccer competition. It’s a celebration of sport and the passion of fans around the world;

With its rich history, great moments and legendary players, the Champions League is a competition that inspires generations of soccer fans across the globe;

We hope that our guide to everything about the Champions League will encourage you to follow the next season even more, and that it will bring even more emotions, more drama and more unforgettable soccer moments;

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