The Champions League is sort of like the playoffs in the NFL. Every continent has a Champions League except for Antarctica because it would be hard to play soccer on ice. The most prestigious one is the UEFA Champions League because it is the European Champions League and Europe has the best leagues. The first round of the Champions league is the qualifying games. I’m not exactly sure how that works, but I know the teams who make it farthest qualify (some teams don’t have to qualify and get in automatically). The second round of the UEFA Champions League is called the group stage. The group stage is a bit like a mini league. You play two games against each team totaling eight games. There are for teams and whoever the top two teams are advance. To advance you have to have the most points in your group. To earn points you have to win or tie.
- Win = 3 points
- Tie = 1 point
- Loss = 0 points
If there happens to be a tie on points in the group then it comes down to goal differential. Goal differential is the difference between however many goals you’ve scored on the opposition to however many goals have been scored on you. When you make it out of the group stage there is a round of 16. UEFA has a draw which decides who plays who. There are two legs (two games) one game is at one sides stadium and the other is at the other teams stadium in each fixture. At the end you add up the two teams goals (separately). Whoever has more goals wins. In the case of a tie on goals you see who has more away goals (goals scored away from home stadium). If that is also a tie then the game goes into extra time like in the NFL. There are two 15 minute halves added on to the 90 minutes played. If it is still tied on away goals then the game goes into penalties like hockey. Each manager chooses five players to shoot a penalty. whoever score more wins. If the game is tied at the end of the penalties then it goes into SUDDEN DEATH! Dun, dun, dun. Sudden death is were one team takes a penalty and if they score the other team has to score otherwise they lose. If the team that shoots first misses and the other team scores the team who shot first loses. These same events keep going through two more rounds until the final comes. Then whoever wins the final is considered the best team in the world and gains a spot in the Club World Cup which is where all the champions of the different Champions Leagues play each other. There are also other Champions Leagues around the world (The U.S. Champions League is called the CONCACAF Champions League) that are pretty much the same as the UEFA one just less prestigious. I hope you learned a little about the Champions League because this took a really long time to write.
P.S. To learn how you qualify for the Champions League read “How Do The European Leagues Work”.