THE 2021/22 season is already underway with Champions League and Europa League.
Chelsea lifted last year’s CL trophy after seeing off Man City in an all-Premier League final – but it’s a while yet before the Blues have to begin their title defence.
And there’s changes on the way in Europe’s premier competition, with Uefa rocking the boat this term.
Do away goals count in Champions League and Europa League matches?
Away goals have been a feature of European knockout games since 1965.
But this campaign things are going to be different.
After years of speculation, Uefa have finally decided to scrap the away goals rule in both Champions League and Europa League knockout games over two-legs.
As such, the aggregate score will now be the determining factor in sending a tie into extra-time.
Should the scores be level after the extra 30 minutes, we go to penalties.
The law previously gave a significant advantage to sides who hit the back of the net on the road, but drew criticism from many fans.
Uefa President Aleksander Ceferin explained the decision: “The away goals rule has been an intrinsic part of Uefa competitions since it was introduced in 1965. However, the question of its abolition has been debated at various Uefa meetings over the last few years.
“Although there was no unanimity of views, many coaches, fans and other football stakeholders have questioned its fairness and have expressed a preference for the rule to be abolished.
“The impact of the rule now runs counter to its original purpose as, in fact, it now dissuades home teams – especially in first legs – from attacking, because they fear conceding a goal that would give their opponents a crucial advantage.
“There is also criticism of the unfairness, especially in extra time, of obliging the home team to score twice when the away team has scored.
“It is fair to say that home advantage is nowadays no longer as significant as it once was.
“Taking into consideration the consistency across Europe in terms of styles of play, and many different factors which have led to a decline in home advantage, the Uefa Executive Committee has taken the correct decision in adopting the view that it is no longer appropriate for an away goal to carry more weight than one scored at home.”