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Which Premier League teams can qualify for UEFA European competitions?

25 May 2023

Find out which clubs can enter the Champions League, Europa League and Europa Conference League through their league positions

With just days left in the 2022/23 season, five Premier League clubs are battling to qualify for a UEFA European competition or to upgrade their position and enter a more prestigious tournament.  

But what league position will earn what qualification to what UEFA competition? Here we break it down for the 2022/23 season. 

Race for Europe

Pos Team Pl GD Pts
7 AVL 38 +5 61
8 TOT 38 +7 60
9 BRE 38 +12 59
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UEFA Champions League (UCL) qualification

This part is simple. The clubs who finish in the top four places in the Premier League will qualify for the group stages of the 2023/24 UCL.

Following Matchweek's 37 results, all of Manchester CityArsenal, Manchester United and Newcastle United are guaranteed to finish in the top four.

N.B. This will be the last season of the UCL being in its traditional format of eight groups of four teams, before it changes to a new type of competition in 2024/25.

UEFA Europa League (UEL) qualification

The team finishing fifth in the Premier League table automatically qualify for the group stages of the UEL. This has been confirmed as Liverpool.

The other UEL slot goes to the FA Cup winners. If the FA Cup winners have already qualified for the UCL or UEL through their league position, their place goes to the next highest-ranked team not qualified for UEFA competitions in the Premier League.  

Since Man City or Man Utd will win the FA Cup and finish in the top five, their UEL spot will go to the team finishing sixth in the league.

Brighton & Hove Albion have secured that spot.

UEFA Europa Conference League (UECL) qualification

The EFL Cup winners qualify for the playoff stages of the UECL, but as Man Utd have claimed this season’s trophy and cannot finish outside the top six, their place will go to the next highest-ranked team not qualified for UEFA competitions, which is likely to be the team finishing seventh.

Aston Villa, Tottenham Hotspur and Brentford will all be competing for that place on the final day.

Fixtures in the race for Europe
Club Fixtures
Can the club finishing eighth get a European place?

Not by their league position, only by winning a domestic or European competition. 

What about if a PL team win a UEFA trophy?

Work along the following principles: qualification for a UEFA tournament by winning a UEFA competition cancels out a domestic qualification and does not transfer that domestic qualification to another club.  

If a club qualify for a UEFA competition through winning a UEFA competition and not through a domestic route, they will become an additional English qualifier in that competition.  

So Man City can qualify for the 2023/24 UCL by winning the 2022/23 UCL.  

However, if City also finish in the top four that will change nothing and their double qualification for the UCL has no impact on another Premier League team.  

What if West Ham win the UECL?

If West Ham United were to win the UEFA Europa Conference League, they would qualify for the 2023/24 UEFA Europa League.  

That qualification would not affect the allocation of places to Premier League clubs through their finishing positions, irrespective of where West Ham end the season in the table.  

See: West Ham through to Europa Conference League final

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