BREAKING: UEFA abolishes away goal rule starting 2021/22 season
UEFA has issued a statement abolishing the away goals rule in all UEFA Competitions (men, women and youth) starting 2021/22 season. The decision takes immediate effect as of the qualifying phases of the 2021/22 competitions.
The decision was approved by the UEFA Executive Committee following the recommendation of the UEFA Club Competitions Committee and the UEFA Women’s Football Committee.
“Following the recommendation of the UEFA Club Competitions Committee and the UEFA Women’s Football Committee, the UEFA Executive Committee has today approved a proposal to remove the so-called away goals rule from all UEFA club competitions (men, women and youth) as of the qualifying phases of the 2021/22 competitions,” the statement read.
“The away goals rule was applied to determine the winner of a two-legged knockout tie in cases where the two teams had scored the same number of goals on aggregate over the two matches. In such cases, the team which had scored the higher number of goals away from home was considered the winner of the tie and qualified for the next round of the competition. If the two teams had scored the same number of goals at home and away at the end of normal playing time in the second leg, extra time was played, followed by kicks from the penalty mark if no goal was scored”,
With the decision to remove this rule, ties in which the two teams score the same number of goals over the two legs would be not decided on the number of goals scored away, but two 15-minute periods of extra time are played at the end of the second leg and in case the teams score the same number of goals or no goals during this extra time, kicks from the penalty mark would determine the team which qualifies to the next stage of the competition.
UEFA President Aleksander Čeferin, after abolishment of the away goal rule said football stakeholders have expressed their concerns over the away goal rule which they thought is unfair.
“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 decision by UEFA will be a new experience for players and fans as they adopt to winning games either at home or away to secure a place in next round of any UEFA organized competition.