UEFA announces new club competition that will begin in 2021
Harold Cunningham - UEFA / UEFA / Getty

European clubs will have another tournament to partake in soon, as UEFA announced Sunday it has approved a new 32-team competition that will begin play in 2021.

Provisionally titled UEL2, it is scheduled to be played on Thursdays, except for the final, which will take place on a Wednesday.

The tournament will run simultaneously to the Champions League and Europa League and will feature a group stage consisting of eight groups of four teams.

There will be an extra knockout round before the round of 16, where teams that finish second in the new competition's groups stage will compete against the clubs that finish third in their respective Europa League groups.

While UEFA didn't clarify how teams would qualify, a minimum of 34 countries will be represented, diversity praised by president Aleksander Ceferin.

"There was a widespread demand by all clubs to increase their chances of participating more regularly in European competition," Ceferin said. "This has been achieved with a strategic approach, and in accordance with UEFA’s objective of having both more quality and more inclusivity in our club competitions."

The winner of the UEL2 will earn a berth in the following season's Europa League, much like champions of the latter currently ascend to the Champions League.

UEFA last administered a third European club competition in 2008, when the final edition of the Intertoto Cup was played between 50 teams over the summer. Prior to that, the last tournament to complement the Champions League and Europa League was the Cup Winners' Cup, though it ultimately merged with the Europa League (then the UEFA Cup) in 1999.

UEFA announces new club competition that will begin in 2021
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