UCL rules for January signings to be eased

Reuters
PLAYERS who switch clubs during the course of a season will be allowed to play for both in the Champions League under new rules announced by UEFA yesterday.
Reuters

PLAYERS who switch clubs during the course of a season will be allowed to play for both in the Champions League under new rules announced by UEFA yesterday.

The European global soccer body said in a statement that it would also allow teams to use a fourth substitute in extra-time during UEFA Champions League and Europa League knockout ties.

The new ruling, to come into effect next season, means that a player who been fielded by one club in the group stage of the UCL, and is transferred during the January window, can play for his new club in the knockout stages.

The same applies to the Europa League.

Under current rules, clubs which qualify for the knockout stage of either the UCL or Europa League are allowed to register three new players.

These can include one player who has represented a different club in the Europa League group stages but none who have been fielded for another club in the UCL group stage.

The present ruling prevents Barcelona from fielding Philippe Coutinho in the UCL this season as he has already played for Liverpool.

Alexis Sanchez was eligible for Manchester United, however, as he switched from Arsenal in the Europa League to the UCL.

The new rules state that “a club may register three new eligible players without any restrictions”.

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