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All you need to know about the new UEFA Champions League qualifying system with 53 teams

Some changes have been made to the UEFA Champions League qualifying system as the 2018/19 season is set to kick off

Qualifying for the 2018/19 UEFA Champions League spans more than two months, involves 53 teams and will entail 91 fixtures in all.

Preliminary round

Fixtures: June 26 & 29.

The preliminary round will be a mini new mini-tournament between four teams that will take place in Gibraltrar. The draw holds on June 12.

The matches will be played on June 26 and 29. The overall victor proceeding to the first qualifying round.

The three losing teams will transfer to the champions path of the UEFA Europa League second qualifying rounds.

First qualifying round

Fixtures: July 10, 11 & 17, 18

Thirty two teams are involved in this round, which will be a two-legged straight ties. Thirty-one teams are already known. The last one will be the winner from the preliminary round.

There will be 16 two-legged ties. The 16 winners will go into the champions path of the second qualifying round while the other 16 losers will transfer to the champions path of the UEFA Europa League second qualifying round.

Second qualifying round

Fixtures: July 24, 25, 31 & August 1

At this stage, qualifying splits into two paths – the champions path and the league path. The champions path is for domestic title holders; the league path is for non-champions.

Champions path

20 teams: 16 winners from first qualifying rounds + 4 already known.

There will be 10 two-legged ties, with the winners advancing to the champions path of the third qualifying round. Losing teams will transfer to the champions path of the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round.

League path

4 teams: already known.
There will be two two-legged ties, with the winners going into the league path of the third qualifying round. Losing teams will transfer to the main path of the UEFA Europa League third qualifying round.

Third qualifying round

Fixtures: August 7, 8 & 14

Champions path

12 teams: 10 winners from second qualifying round champions path + 2 already known teams
There will be six two-legged ties, with the winners proceeding to the champions path of the play-offs. Losing teams will transfer to the champions path of the UEFA Europa League play-offs.

League path

8 teams: 2 winners of second qualifying round league path + 6 already known teams. There will be four two-legged ties, with the winners going into the league path of the play-offs. Losing teams will transfer to the UEFA Europa League group stage.

Play-offs

Fixtures: August 21, 22 & 28, 29

Champions path

8 teams: 6 winners from third qualifying round champions path + 2 already known teams.

There will be four two-legged ties, with the winners progressing to the group stage. Losing teams will transfer to the UEFA Europa League group stage.

League path

4 teams from third qualifying round league path

There will be two two-legged ties, with the winners advancing to the group stage. Losing teams will transfer to the UEFA Europa League group stage.

SEE FULL SCHEDULE OF MATCHES

Source: UEFA.com

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