Uefa writes in a press release that it wants to make the qualifiers for the European Football Championship and World Cup less predictable and more dynamic.

In order to do so, from September 2024 there will be twelve qualification groups instead of ten as at present.

The groups will also consist of four or five teams, instead of five or six.

The group winners of the European qualifiers will qualify directly for the EC or WC.

Also, some of the second group will qualify directly for the European Championship or World Cup, while some will have to play playoff matches.

"Tackled the predictability"

The European Football Championship will continue to consist of 24 teams.

For the 2026 FIFA World Cup, Uefa has 16 out of 48 places.

"We have tackled the predictability of the European qualifiers with a new and fresh format that will give all teams an equal chance to qualify for the major tournaments," said UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin.

The Nations League will expand with a knockout round in March.

This is to create continuity between the end of the groups in November and the finals in June.

The first and second in each group in the A division will play in the quarter-finals before meeting in the final game consisting of the semi-finals and the final.

Qualifying games are introduced

The second change is that the group threes in the A division and the group twos in the B division, as well as the group threes in the B division and the group twos in the C division, will play qualifiers for promotion and relegation between the divisions.

Sweden was relegated from the B division last fall and will play in the C division from 2024.

Uefa also announces that the final of the 2023 European Super Cup will be moved from Russian Kazan to Athens.