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Manchester United’s Champions League qualification take a big blow

Only Aston Villa go into the second-legs with an advantage, with Liverpool and West Ham’s elimination looking certain after heavy defeats on Thursday night

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Manchester United’s hopes for an undeserved Champions League spot were entirely dependent on England’s UEFA coefficient, which would mean 5th place would be enough for a spot in Europe’s premier club competition.

This is because the Champions League is set to expand to 36 teams next season, with the ‘Swiss League’ format set to be introduced.

This will see two additional spots in Europe’s top competition go to the two countries that finish their international season with the highest coefficient ranking.

As the Daily Mail report, Italy look set to secure one of the spots as they have 4 teams still in the 3 UEFA club competitions.

Atalanta, Roma, and AC Milan are all still in the UEFA Europa League and things seem to be going well for them in the quarter-finals.

Atalanta demolished Jürgen Klopp’s Liverpool 3-0 at Anfield in the first leg of the quarters, while Roma beat fellow Italians 1-0.

Fiorentina is the other Italian club still playing European football, and they were held to a goalless draw in the Czech Republic by FC Viktoria Plzeň in the Europa Conference League quarters.

After Thursday night, their coefficient stands at 18.428, with a maximum score of 22.375 still possible if the Italian teams go far enough.

The battle for the last two spots is left to English and German clubs.

Next week’s second leg ties will be extremely crucial to decide which league gets the extra spot.

Only 4 Premier League teams remain in Europe: Arsenal having drawn 2-2 with Bayern in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals, West Ham who lost 2-0 to Bayer Leverkusen in the first leg of Europa League quarer finals, Aston Villa who sneaked away with a 2-1 win against Lille in the Conference League quarters and Liverpool who were dismantled 3-0 at home by Atalanta in the Europa League first leg quarters.

Only Aston Villa go into the second-legs with an advantage, with Liverpool and West Ham’s elimination looking certain after heavy defeats on Thursday night.

Heading into those games, England have a coefficient score of 16.750 and Germany are on 16.785 which means next week’s return legs will be what decides if the 5th spot United are hoping o secure will be enough for the Champions League.

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