Home BUSINESS Champions League restart: Lisbon to host condensed 12-day final stages

Champions League restart: Lisbon to host condensed 12-day final stages

Champions League quarter-finals: August 12-15; semi-finals: August 18/19; final: August 23.
The Champions League is set to be concluded in August
The Champions League is set to be concluded in August. 

 

Champions League knockout games are set to be played in an 12-day condensed tournament in Lisbon in August.

The Portuguese capital will host the quarter-finals, semi-finals and final between August 12-23.

All ties will be played as single legs across two different stadiums in Lisbon – the Estadio da Luz and the Estadio Jose Alvalade.

UEFA’s Executive Committee are expected to approve the new mini tournament at a meeting on Wednesday.

How the four outstanding last-16 matches should be completed has yet to be decided. Manchester City were due to play a second-leg match against Real Madrid on March 17 at the Etihad Stadium, leading 2-1 from the first leg in Spain. Chelsea are 3-0 down from the home first leg of their tie against Bayern Munich.

Lisbon's Estadio da Luz has a capacity of 65,000
Lisbon’s Estadio da Luz has a capacity of 65,000.

 

Original Champions League final hosts Istanbul are expected to be compensated with the right to stage a future final.

As things stand all the matches would be behind closed doors, but if the Portuguese government were to alter its guidance in time for ticketing to be organised then there is the possibility of some supporters being able to attend.

A decision has yet to be made on the remaining Europa League games this season but it’s likely to follow a similar format with the likely destination a city in Germany – possibly Frankfurt or Dusseldorf.

The Women’s Champions League may also follow a similar pattern, with reports in Spain suggesting the final games could be split between the Basque cities of Bilbao and San Sebastian.

UEFA is understood to be targeting a mid-October start for the group stages of the 2020-21 Champions League, traditionally when you would expect matchday three to start.

But how it reaches that point – and when the qualifying rounds take place – is an extremely complex problem to solve with many leagues likely to still be ongoing when the preliminaries are usually scheduled.

There are big decisions to be made on international football too.

The match schedule and host venues for Euro 2020 are set to be finalised, with every indication being that the 12 original host cities will still be able to fulfil their commitments in summer 2021.

The play-offs for that tournament are intended to be played before Christmas, possibly in one of the international break ‘triple-headers’ in October or November.

Sitting alongside those matches will be the 2020-21 Nations League, which had originally been scheduled to be played over the September, October and November international breaks.

It is understood UEFA remains fully committed to the competition, which proved a big hit in its inaugural run in 2018-19.

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