Date: Jun 10, 2005
UEFA Internet article
Remark: Text only, see UEFA document for original lay-out.
Liverpool allowed to defend title
Copyright © 2005 UEFA
The UEFA Champions League holders Liverpool FC will compete in next season's
Champions League first qualifying round.
Right to defend
The UEFA Executive Committee decided to amend the regulations for the future
editions of the Champions League, so that the holders will have the right to
defend their title and therefore qualify automatically. At the same time, the
number of clubs allowed per national association will remain stable based on
"Exceptionally, for the upcoming season, the UEFA Executive Committee today
decided to allow the current Champions League title-holders to defend their
title," said UEFA in a statement. Liverpool finished fifth in the top English
flight last season.
First qualifying round
The Executive Committee also decided that Liverpool would enter the competition
in the first qualifying round, to be played on 12/13 and 19/20 July, The draw
for the first qualifying round is scheduled to take place on 24 June.
No country protection
There will be no "country protection" for Liverpool, which means that they could
be drawn to play another English club at any stage of the competition. English
domestic champions Chelsea FC and Arsenal FC have qualified for the Champions
League group stage, while Manchester United FC and Liverpool's neighbours
Everton FC join the competition in the third qualifying round.
Market pool share
In addition, Liverpool will be included in the English market pool share with
the status of lowest-placed English club.
Liverpool won the 2004/05 Champions League – the fifth time that the English
side has taken European club football's most prestigious trophy – by beating AC
Milan in a memorable final in Istanbul last month. They were 3-0 down at half-
time, but scored three times in the second half to force a draw and eventually
win a penalty shoot-out 3-2.
Unanimous decision – Olsson
"It was a unanimous decision – I think it was a very good decision," UEFA Chief
Executive Lars-Christer Olsson told uefa.com after the deliberations, "because
there was a need for the amendment.
"The Executive Committee took a decision to amend the regulations slightly for
the Champions League, which means that in the future, the champions will always
be able to defend their title, independently of how many slots each of the
associations have," he added. "As a consequence, the Executive Committee decided
to give Liverpool the opportunity to defend their title in the coming season.
"It means that in future, if [an association] has four free slots for example,
one of these should be allocated to the [Champions League] champions if they
have not qualified through the ordinary system in their domestic league," Mr
For the revised access list, please click here.
NOTE: The information included in this list is provisional and will be confirmed
by UEFA in mid-June following the receipt of the official entry documents from
each of the national associations.