The away goals rule has been abolished in all Uefa competitions, including the Champions League.
All ties that are level on aggregate at the end of the second leg will instead proceed to extra time and possibly penalties. “It is no longer suitable for an away goal to carry more weight,” stated Uefa President Aleksander Ceferin.
The recommendation was made by Uefa’s club competitions committee in May, and it has now been approved by the body’s executive committee. It means that games in the Champions League, Europa League, Europa Conference League, and Women’s Champions League will no longer follow the regulation.
According to Uefa, there is now a smaller discrepancy between the amount of home and away wins as well as home and away goals scored in European tournaments compared to when the regulation was adopted, diminishing home advantage. It attributes this to a number of causes, including improved stadium infrastructure and modern technology such as the video assistant referee.
“The impact of the rule today runs opposite to its original intention in that it now discourages home clubs – especially in first legs – from attacking because they fear losing a goal that would give their opponents a decisive advantage,” Ceferin added. “There is also criticism of the unfairness, particularly in extra time, of requiring the home club to score twice after the away team has scored.”
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“It’s fair to argue that home advantage isn’t as important as it previously was.”