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What Liverpool and West Ham defeats mean for Newcastle’s Champions League hopes

Newcastle United’s minuscule hopes of edging into a Champions League qualifying spot this season have essentially been extinguished after Liverpool and West Ham exited the Europa League on Thursday.

Out of the five English clubs left in European competition at the quarter-final stage, only Aston Villa have made it through to the last-four after their penalty shoot-out win over Lille in the Europa Conference League.

Next season’s expanded Champions League format will see four more spots up for grabs, with two of these additional places handed to the two-best performing countries in UEFA’s coefficient ranking. That meant fifth place in the Premier League might have been enough.

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Newcastle currently sit in sixth, 10 points off Tottenham in fifth with six games to go, which was a wide gap to bridge anyway. Unfortunately for the Premier League, this week’s results mean that a fifth Champions League spot will almost certainly not be bestowed to it, with Germany now likely to earn that honour.

And with this essentially goes Newcastle’s audacious hopes of squeezing into the Champions League given Villa would need to earn fewer than six points and Tottenham, nine, in the remaining league matches to both miss out on the top four.

The UEFA coefficient system sees country associations handed points for their clubs’ wins and competition progression, with the total then divided by the number of teams competing in Europe that season – for instance, England’s total would be divided by eight. Despite the early exits of Newcastle and Manchester United from the Champions League and Brighton’s last-16 defeat to Roma in the Europa League, England were still in a strong position heading into the quarter-final stage.

But the European knockouts of Manchester City, Arsenal, Liverpool and West Ham this week has kiboshed hopes of England being handed that fifth Champions League qualifying spot, with Germany now ahead thanks to Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Bayer Leverkusen’s progression.

Two wins, or a win and two draws, for German sides in the next round will secure them that additional spot while Italy are comfortably home and hosed in attaining that added qualifying spot.

Current UEFA coefficient rankings

Italy – 19.428

Germany – 17.928

England – 17.375

France – 16.083

View news Source: https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/sport/football/football-news/what-liverpool-west-ham-defeats-29023322

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