UEFA will change their seeding procedure for the Champions League. Starting next year, Pot 1 will consist of the defending Champions League winner plus league winners from the top seven countries based on UEFA coefficient. This year, as well as in previous years, all seedings for pots would go strictly by UEFA coefficient. The UEFA coefficient is a ranking system that takes into consideration how a team and their country performs in UEFA sanctioned competitions over a five year period. The highest ranked teams would be placed in Pot 1, next highest in Pot 2 and so forth until you have four pots of eight teams each. Because of that, it caused situations like placing 4th place EPL team Arsenal in Pot 1 and caused the EPL champs, Manchester City, to be placed in Pot 2 and get drawn against Bayern Munich. This year, it could’ve created a worst case scenario group consisting of Real Madrid, Juventus, Liverpool and Monaco.
This new format is much more fair to those teams who are good now instead of those teams who concentrate on getting 4th place trophies and make Champions League every year. This new system will also spread out the more talented teams and further insure those teams get past the Group Stage which is how it should be. They won their league, they deserve an easier way to get to the Knockout Stage. Currently, the top seven countries in UEFA coefficient and their league winner would have a Pot 1 spot would be Spain, England, Germany, Italy, Portugal, France and Russia. Pots 2 through 4 will still use the UEFA coefficient method to fill in the other 24 spots in the Group Stage. I don’t say this too often, but bravo UEFA for doing the right thing. Maybe this starts a trend and you can do the right thing more often but that might be wishful thinking.