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English clubs in risk of losing a Champions League place

Following news recently that England could have their Champions League places reduced after poor performances from English teams in recent years during the competition, Coral look at perhaps why there has been a decline.

It is suggested that the amount of English teams allowed into the competition could reduce to three, somewhat weakening the status of the Premier League, with Serie A on the rise. After Juventus reached the final last season, Italy are in line to take England’s qualifying spot.

Between 2004-2012 there was only one year where an English team didn’t feature in the in the final, which was when Inter Milan beat Bayern Munich, 4/1 second favourites with Coral to win this season, in 2010. In 2008, it was an all English affair as Manchester United beat Chelsea on penalties.

However, following this success from English teams, foreign clubs started circling for the best players. As evidenced with Real Madrid who broke the transfer record at the time, to bring Cristiano Ronaldo to Spain’s capital.

Soccer - UEFA Champions League - Group A - Real Madrid v Shakhtar Donetsk - Estadio Santiago Bernabeu

There is the suggestion as well, that Premier League teams have shifted their priority to ensuring they finish as high as possible in the table, which means greater financial reward.

With the emergence of Manchester City as the latest billionaire club, it has made England’s top flight even more competitive, with Manchester United and Liverpool both dropping out of the top four in recent years, while Tottenham Hotspur enjoyed a top four finish in the 2009/10 season, going on to reach the quarter-finals. This run alerted Real Madrid to the form of Gareth Bale who eventually moved at the end of the 2012/13 campaign.

Should such proposed changes take place, it could definitely be interesting. Arsenal, who have consistently achieved a Champions League finish since the start of the new millennium could all of a sudden start to spend more aggressively to maintain this streak. Their failure and unwillingness to do so this summer may have have certainly been detrimental to them if the changes had come into force for this year.