Ceferin says Uefa may stick to one-legged knockout stage
Uefa president Aleksander Ceferin has indicated that the men’s and women’s Champions League, and Europa League could, in future, be decided by a Super-Bowl style final week of single-game matches in a shared location.
The coronavirus pandemic forced Uefa into their exceptional change of format, with last night’s men’s Champions League final in Lisbon rounding off a series of onelegged quarter and semi-finals.
Ceferin said that he found the format “more interesting” than the traditional home and away two-legged format and suggested that a single city could hold just the semifinals and final over single matches.
“It’s one of the interesting things that was brought by this pandemic,” Ceferin said. “We had to do a system like that. We had to play this way, but at the end, we see it’s a very interesting system.
“It’s quite complicated to place a final eight in the calendar. But we saw that people want exciting matches. Even though you have less matches, the value can be higher if promoted properly,”
The Europa League and Champions League semi-finals and final could quite feasibly be held over seven nights in one city and potentially create the sort of global buzz of the Super Bowl when a series of events all build up through the week into the showpiece final.
The women’s Champions League is following a similar format, held in San Sebastian and Bilbao and culminating in the final on Sunday.
“You are in the centre of attention for a week of the whole world and this might be a fantastic thing, but we have to see,” Ceferin said.
Uefa has already been exploring how to change the Champions League format after 2024 and further discussions will be held next month.