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Uefa reconfigure Champions League and Europa League into single match knockout extravaganza

The Champions League final will be played in Lisbon on 23 August after an eight-team mini tournament.
The Champions League final will be played in Lisbon on 23 August after an eight-team mini tournament. AFP/File

European football’s governing body, Uefa, on Wednesday unveiled plans for an eight-team final phase for the Champions League and the Europa league.

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Both tournaments have been suspended since March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The second tier Europa League will run across four German cities and the final will be played behind closed doors on 21 August.

The Champions League final will take place two days later under the same health protocols at Benfica’s stadium in Lisbon after a single match knockout competition at the venue and Sporting CP's Estadio Jose Alvalade. 

Paris Saint-Germain, Atlético Madrid, RB Leipzig and Atalanta have already booked their places in the last eight. Four games have yet to be played. 

Decision

“A decision is pending on whether the four remaining round of 16 second legs will take place at the home team’s stadium or in Portugal,” said a Uefa statement.

If Uefa goes for the latter option, the Estadio do Dragao in Porto and the Estadio Dom Afonso Henriques in Guimaraes have been lined up for the last-16 ties.

While Lyon, Manchester City and Barcelona hold slight advantages against Juventus, Real Madrid and Napoli respectively, Bayern Munich are favourites to advance after blitzing Chelsea 3-0 in the first leg at Stamford Bridge in February.

And since the resumption of football in Germany on 16 May, Bayern have won all their seven games to notch up their eighth consecutive Bundesliga title and a record extending 30th German top flight crown.

The Bavarians are also in the final of the German Cup where they will take on Bayer Leverkusen at the Olympiastadion in Berlin on 4 July.

 

 

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