Thomas Tuchel slams the proposed new UCL format

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has spoken out against the proposed new UEFA Champions League reforms that will be in place from the 2024/25 season.

The European Super League which was heavily criticized has fallen apart but UEFA’s plan to change the current UCL format and increase the number of teams from 32 to 36 has not received a warm reception either.

The idea has not gone down too well and will see teams that qualify, play at least 10 league stage games with the traditional group of four teams scrapped and replaced with one division ahead of the elimination stages of the competition.

Ahead of Chelsea’s UCL semis against Real Madrid in Spain on Tuesday, Tuchel was asked what he thought of the planned changes and he didn’t hold back with his criticism. He noted that top sides already play too many games and do not need their fixtures to be further congested.

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“I’m not sure if I like it because I can only see more games out of it,” Tuchel said. “In the schedule that we have, it’s very hard for me to be excited at all.

“All these discussions about the Super League made us forget that we have a new format of Champions League very soon. Did they ask any coach about this? I don’t think so. They did not ask me. Did they ask any player about it? I don’t think so.

“There are so many new formats – we have Nations League, we have a new world championship for the clubs coming soon, we have more teams in the European Championship in summer. It’s just more and more and more games, but not more quality.

“At the same time we have three substitutes here in the Premier League, in the toughest competition.

“No, I’m not happy about this format, not at all. But I was not involved.”

Meanwhile, Chelsea will be aiming to start well and get a decent result from the first leg of the semi-final clash against Real Madrid at the Alfredo Di Stefano Stadium on Tuesday night. Both sides haven’t been scoring much in recent weeks and a tight game is expected.

The winner of the clash will face either Manchester City or Paris Saint-Germain in the final of the competition on May 29.