UEFA Announce Women’s Nations League to Begin Next Year

A new major competition for women is set to begin as UEFA announces the creation of a Women’s Nations League, with the tournament set to determine the three European qualifiers for future editions of the Olympic Games.

Scheduled to commence next year, the new UEFA Women’s Nations League will hold its opening season from late 2023 until the European springtime in 2024, meaning it will determine the three European teams taking part in Paris Olympics 2024.

Countries will also able to qualify automatically for the Women’s Euros and FIFA Women’s World Cup automatically through this competition, making it slightly different in format to the men’s equivalent.

According to UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin, these are continued efforts by the European football’s governing body to invest in women’s football.

“Off the back of a historic UEFA Women’s Euro, it is now time to further develop women’s national team football. We have built an open, competitive, and continuous system in which every match will matter, a true reflection of the European sports model,” said Ceferin.

Countries will be divided into leagues based on their ranking with promotion and relegation between the leagues. UEFA confirmed that there would be three tiers, with teams playing in groups of three or four within said tiers.

It is open to all 51 member associations and will be played in three leagues.

‘I am convinced that this format will help all European national associations and keep the dream of qualifying for a major international tournament alive.’  – UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin

Proposals for a revamp of the women’s national team competitions, including the introduction of a Nations League, were presented to member associations by a working group in Frankfurt in October ahead of the qualifying draw for the men’s Euro in 2024.

The new formats were officially ratified by UEFA’s ruling executive committee yesterday, 3 November 2022.

At the end of the Nations League phase in 2024, both the first and second-placed teams in the four League A groups will automatically qualify for the Women’s EURO 2025.

The eight qualifiers will join the 2025 hosts – yet to be determined – while the rest of the top countries go into the European Qualifiers stage, taking place during the remainder of 2024.

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