Formerly known as the UEFA Cup, the UEFA Europa League is the secondary club competition in Europe behind the UEFA Champions League. Clubs that qualify are usually the runners-up of domestic top-flight leagues, along with domestic cup competition winners.
Founded in 1971, the competition has seen Sevilla be the most successful, having won the competition six times. Villarreal of Spain are the current champions, winning their first title after defeating Manchester United 11-10 on penalties after initially playing out a 1-1 draw at Stadion Gdańsk.
Format of the UEFA Europa League
There is a Qualifying Round and a Play-off round in August before 32 teams compete in the Group Stage of the competition, lasting from September to December.
The new format will see a preliminary knockout round, with 8 group runners-up from the group stage taking on 8 third-placed teams from the UEFA Champions League group stage. The 8 winners from the preliminary knockout round then enter the knockout phase, along with the 8 group winners from group stage. The knockout phase runs from February to May, culminating in the Final in late May.
2021-2022 UEFA Europa League
The 32 teams that are competing in the 2021-2022 Europa League are listed below. Click the links (where available) for a guide to visiting each stadium.
Napoli (Italy) – Stadio San Paolo
Leicester City (England) – King Power Stadium
Spartak Moscow (Russia) – Otkritie Arena
Legia Warsaw (Poland) – Stadion Wojska Polskiego
Bayer Leverkusen (Germany) – BayArena
Celtic (Scotland) – Celtic Park
Real Betis (Spain) – Benito Villamarín
Ferencváros (Hungary) – Groupama Arena
16th September 2021: Matchday one
30th September 2021: Matchday two
21st October 2021: Matchday three
4th November 2021: Matchday four
25th November 2021 Matchday five
9th December 2021: Matchday six
13th December 2021: Knockout round play-offs draw
17th February 2022: Knockout round play-offs first legs
24th February 2022: Knockout round play-offs first legs
25th February 2022: Round of 16 draw
10th March 2022: Round of 16 first legs
17th March 2022: Round of 16 second legs
18th March 2022: Quarter-finals & Semi-finals draw
7th April 2022: Quarter-finals first leg
14th April 2022: Quarter-finals second leg
28th April 2022: Semi-finals first leg
5th May 2022: Semi-finals second leg
Future UEFA Europa League Final’s
2022-2023 UEFA Europa League Final (May 2023) – Puskás Aréna (Budapest, Hungary)
2023-2024 UEFA Europa League Final (May 2024) – Aviva Stadium (Dublin, Ireland)
2024-2025 UEFA Europa League Final (May 2025) – San Mamés (Bilbao, Spain)