Football reforms: Nations League from 2023 for women too

Status: 03.11.2022 1:21 pm

UEFA will also introduce the Women’s Nations League in the fall of 2023. Linked to this is a new qualification mode for European and World Championships.

In the future there will be two interconnected phases, the Nations League and the European Qualifiers, which will build on each other and both take place in a league format. This was announced by UEFA in Nyon. The change follows a recommendation from the UEFA Women’s Football Committee. The League of Nations has been around for men since 2018.

As decided by the UEFA Executive Committee, the new system offers a combination of the newly introduced Nations League and first-time European qualification in the run-up to Euro 2025. Not only is there a chance of another title being awarded, but tickets for the European Championship will be awarded. And the World Cup and Olympics in this way in the future.

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said he was “convinced that this format will help all European national associations and keep the dream of qualifying for a major international tournament.”

New mode for more excitement

The decision can be interpreted as a reaction to sporting inequality as well as the plethora of one-sided matches and high results in the playoffs. The DFB women, for example, won nine out of ten matches en route to the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, ultimately with a goal difference of 47:5. It was similar to other major countries such as England or France.

In the newly created Nations League, teams initially play in a league format with three power classes each in groups of four or three. Followed by promotion and relegation matches, as well as a final stage in which the top four teams compete for the title. In addition, the group stage is about creating a good starting point for the so-called European qualifiers.

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These will also be played the same way in six matches. The eight best-ranked teams in the A-League Final Table, Division One, qualify directly for EM 2025. The remaining starting places will be awarded over two playoff rounds in Matches One and Two.

The final tables for the European qualifiers after promotion and relegation form the starting point for the subsequent Nations League.

The road to the Olympics also leads through the League of Nations

Qualification for the 2027 World Cup follows the same principles. Every four years, the Nations League final also serves as a qualifying track for the Olympic football tournament, so European representatives will be decided alongside France at the 2024 Olympics in Paris in the first edition. To date, the starting places for the Olympic Games have been allocated to the world championships.


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