UEFA Youth League

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UEFA Youth League
UYL 2015 Logo.png
Founded 2013
Region Europe (UEFA)
Number of teams 64
Current champions Austria Red Bull Salzburg (1st title)
Most successful club(s) England Chelsea (2 titles)
Television broadcasters Arena Sport
BeIN Sports (Spain)
BT Sport
Digiturk
Mediaset Premium
ORF Sport +
Sport1 (Germany)
Sport TV
TV3 Sport 1
Ziggo Sport
Website Official website
2016–17 UEFA Youth League

The UEFA Youth League[1] (originally titled as the UEFA U-19 Champions League) is an association football competition for all under age players registered to the 32 senior clubs that qualify for the group stage of the UEFA Champions League, plus 32 domestic youth champions.[2]

History[edit]

In May 2010, UEFA organised a match, referred to as the "UEFA Under-18 Challenge", between the under-18 teams of Bayern Munich and Internazionale, three days prior to the UEFA Champions League Final between the respective senior sides. Internazionale won the match 2–0 with two goals from Denis Alibec. The match was part of "UEFA Grassroots Day", and acted as an inspiration for the UEFA Youth League.[3][4][5]

The teams in the first tournament, 2013–14 UEFA Youth League, played a group stage with the same composition and calendar as the 2013–14 UEFA Champions League group stage, and was held on a 'trial basis'.[5]

The eight group-winners and eight runners-up from group stage then participated in a knockout phase. Unlike the UEFA Champions League, the knockout phase had single-leg ties, with the semi-finals and final played at neutral venues.[5]

British media commented that the competition was formed to "limit the growing influence of the NextGen Series".[6]

In April 2014, Barcelona became the first champion, beating Benfica by 3–0 in the final-four held in Nyon.

After a two-year trial period, the UEFA Youth League became a permanent UEFA competition starting from the 2015–16 season, with the tournament expanded from 32 to 64 teams to allow the youth domestic champions of the top 32 associations according to their UEFA country coefficients to also participate. The 32 UEFA Champions League group stage youth teams retain the group stage format, with the group winners advancing to the round of 16 and the runners-up advancing to the play-offs. The 32 youth domestic champions play two rounds of two-legged ties, with the eight winners advancing to the play-offs, where they play a single match at home against the Champions League path runners-up. The round of 16 onwards retain the same format of single-leg ties as before.[7]

The most successful team is Chelsea with two trophies. They have won the trophy on two consecutive seasons by beating Shakhtar Donetsk on 13 April 2015 and Paris Saint-Germain on 18 April 2016.

Finals[edit]

Season Winners Score Runners-up Losing semi-finalists Final stage host
2013–14 Spain Barcelona 3–0 Portugal Benfica Spain Real Madrid and Germany Schalke 04 Switzerland Colovray Stadium, Nyon
2014–15 England Chelsea 3–2 Ukraine Shakhtar Donetsk Belgium Anderlecht and Italy Roma
2015–16 England Chelsea 2–1 France Paris Saint-Germain Belgium Anderlecht and Spain Real Madrid
2016–17 Austria Red Bull Salzburg 2–1 Portugal Benfica Spain Barcelona and Spain Real Madrid

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "UEFA EURO 2020 to be held across continent". UEFA.com. 7 December 2012. Retrieved 7 December 2012. 
  2. ^ "UEFA Youth League: How the new system will work". UEFA.com. 27 August 2015. 
  3. ^ "Young stars take centre stage". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 18 May 2010. Retrieved 22 October 2016. 
  4. ^ "Inter take Under-18 honours". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 19 May 2010. Retrieved 22 October 2016. 
  5. ^ a b c "UEFA Youth League club competition launched". UEFA.org. Union of European Football Associations. 7 December 2012. Retrieved 7 December 2012. 
  6. ^ "UEFA to launch U19 shadow Champions League from 2013 to curtail NextGen series". Daily Mail. London. 30 June 2012. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  7. ^ "UEFA Youth League retained and expanded". UEFA.org. 18 September 2014. 

External links[edit]