European Club Association (ECA) chairman Andrea Agnelli has confirmed that UEFA are clearing the way for the return of a third club competition, two decades after the disappearance of the Cup Winners' Cup. Agnelli, who is also on UEFA's club competitions committee as well as being chairman of Juventus, said at the ECA's General Assembly in Split, Croatia on Tuesday, that "the 'green light' has been given to introduce a third competition...as of the 2021/22 season". The move must now be validated at a future meeting of UEFA's Executive Committee.
Agnelli said the move would mean a total of 96 teams being involved across the three competitions.
With 48 sides currently involved in the Europa League group stage, that would likely mean that competition being reduced to 32 teams, with the same number competing in the Champions League group stage and the new competition.
His comments come after UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin played down media reports on the subject when speaking to journalists in Monaco last month.
"They are just discussions, is it better to have 64 in the Europa League or 32 and 32? They are just discussions," Ceferin said at the time.
The Cup Winners' Cup ran for almost 40 years before being abandoned in 1999 at a time when the Champions League was being expanded.