Who can qualify for the Champions League and Europa League?

25th Apr 2019

Tottenham, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United permutations explained

Liverpool and Manchester City have the top two spots wrapped up, but what could happen for the remaining four teams of the Premier League’s 'big six'?

English football is in fine fettle at the moment with Premier League sides eyeing glory in Europe’s top tournaments.

Tottenham and Liverpool are in the Champions League semi-finals while Arsenal and Chelsea could well meet in the Europa League final.

The Premier League is enjoying an impressive resurgence on the European stage – Man United won the Europa League in 2017, a year after Liverpool reached the final, while the Reds were Champions League runners-up last season.

There’s plenty that could still affect who will qualify for next season’s competitions and could spell for a nervous wait for some.

Here’s the permutations for what could happen for the Premier League’s top sides.

What happens to Champions League and Europa League winners?

The winners of the two European competitions will go straight into next season’s Champions League group stage.

There is a good chance this season’s Champions League final will see Tottenham face Liverpool while an all-London clash between Arsenal and Chelsea could happen in the Europa League final.

How many teams can England have in the Champions League?

Countries from across Europe can have a maximum of five clubs in the Champions League.

Should Tottenham win the Champions League and miss out on a top four finish, they will qualify alongside the other four Premier League clubs.

The same would apply if Arsenal or Chelsea win the Europa League, but finish fifth or lower.

How does that impact Europa League qualification?

Should Arsenal or Chelsea win the Europa League and thus make the Champions League next season, the Premier League will not gain another European spot.

Instead two English teams will be in the Europa League, rather than three.

What if Premier League teams win in Europe but fail to make top four?

Liverpool are already assured of a top four spot, along with Manchester Citybut the other four clubs in the mix certainly aren’t.

Tottenham, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United are all vying for the two remaining spots.

If English teams were to win both European tournaments, the Premier League’s fourth-placed team would not qualify for the Champions League and instead would drop into the Europa League group stages.

For example, if Tottenham finished fifth and Arsenal finished six but both won in Europe, Manchester United could finish fourth but only qualify for the Europa League.

What about the FA Cup?

The winners of England’s two domestic cups earn entrance to the Europa League.

City won the Carabao Cup but will not use their place as they will be in the Champions League next season. Their Europa League spot goes to the top-flight’s sixth-placed team.

City could also win the FA Cup when they face Watford.

If Watford win they will get Europa League football next term, but if City win, it will go to whoever finishes seventh (most likely Everton, Watford, Leicester or Wolves).

Does your head hurt now? Ours does…

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