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Uefa threatens to remove Champions League places for countries who cancel leagues

Uefa threatens to remove Champions League places for countries who cancel leagues

A letter from Aleksander Ceferin suggests that the governing body are keen to see the seasons completed

9:46am on Friday 3rd April 2020
Paul Macdonald

Uefa are pressing on with their desire to get domestic competitions completed for Europe's association members, despite the surprise decision made by Belgium to cancel their league, and have suggested that Champions League qualification could be withheld for leagues who do not comply.

The Jupiler Pro League for 2019/20 is unlikely to continue after a board meeting for the Belgian FA voted unanimously to cancel the remaining games and award Club Brugge, the runaway leaders, the title.

The decision still needs to be ratified in a further meeting on April 15 but the move has sent shockwaves through the remaining league associations and Uefa have issued a response criticising the Belgium FA's decree.

Club Brugge could lose out on up to £27m if they are prohibited from competing in Europe's premier club competition next season.

In a letter to members signed by Aleksander Ceferin and reported by AP, the continental governing body said: "Since participation in Uefa club competitions is determined by the sporting result achieved at the end of a full domestic competition, a premature termination would cast doubts about the fulfilment of such condition.

“Uefa reserves the right to assess the entitlement of clubs to be admitted to the 2020/21 Uefa club competitions, in accordance with the relevant applicable competition regulations. We know how much you share with us the core values of our sport and feel your support in our mission to protect the integrity of its competitions.”

Ceferin's letter also stressed Uefa's feeling that the Belgian FA's decision had been premature and reiterated their desire to see competitions completed.

It adds: "We are confident that football can restart in the months to come - with conditions that will be dictated by public authorities - and believe that any decision of abandoning domestic competitions is, at this stage, premature and not justified.”

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