A revolutionary change is sweeping over European football as UEFA unveils a redesigned game calendar for the next year with the Champions League planned for Thursdays. This is in addition to the customary match days of Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

The most important adjustment is that all of UEFA’s esteemed club tournaments will now have their own designated match weeks. There will be no Europa League or Europa Conference League matches planned for the first week of the season.

Thus, the period between September 17 and September 19 will be an exclusive Champions League event. Given UEFA’s determination to elevate this tournament to the pinnacle of European club competitions, this unconventional move is understandable. They say that this change is to suit the more teams who have signed up and to spread out the matches more evenly throughout the week.

Another thing that sets this new era apart is the absence of the old group stage replaced with a single-league system. To create an exciting and competitive atmosphere, each club will play eight matches against a different opponent. With this change, the stakes for the competing teams will be higher and the competition will be more intense.

Extended league stage format

The format’s effects will also ripple through the tournament’s qualifying and following rounds. In the league stage, the top eight teams go directly to the round of 16. Meanwhile, a knockout round play-off involving teams ranked ninth to 24 will fill the remaining spots.

Especially harsh is the new structure for clubs who place 25th or worse; it does not provide any kind of Europa League cushion at all. They have spaced out important dates throughout the year, with the league season beginning in September and ending in January.

Each competition’s match weeks are the schedule’s major elements, building up to the final matchday’s simultaneous kickoffs. With these tweaks, UEFA reportedly wants to improve the watching experience and build up to the most exciting parts of the event.

Champions League to touch Thursdays in new calendar

  • Draw for the League Stage: August 29, 2024
  • Matchday 1 to 8: From September 17, 2024, to January 29, 2025
  • Knockout Round Play-offs Draw: January 31, 2025
  • Knockout Round Play-offs: 11/12 & 18/19 February 2025
  • Round of 16 Draw: February 21, 2025
  • Round of 16: 4/5 & 11/12 March 2025
  • Quarter-finals: 8/9 & 15/16 April 2025
  • Semi-finals: 29/30 April & 6/7 May 2025
  • Final: May 31, 2025

Soccer fans are waiting with bated breath for the start of this new era, and UEFA have clarified that the calendar is subject to change based on what happens. On August 29, 2024, the league stage draw will take place, marking the beginning of an exciting adventure that will take place all throughout Europe’s footballing scene.

Simply put, the Champions League is about to enter a new age of intense competition, unpredictable outcomes, and spectacular matches thanks to UEFA’s forward-thinking changes. A thrilling chapter in football history is about to unfold, as each encounter has the potential to determine the fate of teams competing for European glory.