Premier League teams join the Carabao Cup at the second-round stage this week knowing the tournament’s winners will enter a new European competition.
The winners of this season’s cup will not qualify for the Europa League as in the past, but will instead go into the Uefa Europa Conference League (UECL).
They will enter at the play-off phase, the round before the group stages.
Uefa’s third-tier tournament – which was announced in December 2018 – starts next season.
If the EFL Cup winners qualify for Europe through the league – as has happened every year since 2013 – then the sixth-placed team in the Premier League (or seventh place if the FA Cup is won by a top-six team) will go into the UECL play-offs.
There will still be at least four English teams in the Champions League and two in the Europa League.
The Europa Conference League, which will have 32 teams in the group stages, will be played on Thursday nights along with the Europa League, which is reduced from 48 to 32 teams.
The UECL groups are likely to contain teams from some of Europe’s smaller countries, as well as teams who finish sixth in Spain, Italy and Germany and win the play-offs – in addition to clubs that lose their Europa League qualifiers.
The winners of the UECL qualify for the following season’s Europa League.
Real Life. Real News. Real Voices
Help us tell more of the stories that matterBecome a founding member
Subscribe to the newsletter news
We hate SPAM and promise to keep your email address safe