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What is the UEFA Europa Conference League?

Olympiacos take on Fiorentina in Athens tomorrow night in what could be a cracker

Fiorentina

The UEFA Europa Conference League reaches its conclusion for the 2023-24 season tomorrow night when Olympiacos take on Fiorentina in the final in Athens.

While it is UEFA’s third tier competition, it has again provided plenty of thrills and spills this season, culminating in the clash between the Greek giants – who are playing the final on home turf – and the Viola, for whom it is a second final in two years following their defeat to West Ham 12 months ago.

The Europa League final was won last week by Atalanta while Real Madrid meet Borussia Dortmund in the final of the Champions League final at Wembley on Saturday.

The final of the Europa Conference League takes place at the AEK Arena with a 2000 UK BST kick-off time.

 

When was the UEFA Europa Conference League first staged?

The competition was launched in 2021 with Roma winning the trophy with victory over Feyenoord in Tirana.

West Ham won the second staging by seeing off Fiorentina 2-1 in Prague with goals from Said Benrahma and Jarrod Bowen.

Although it is sometimes derided – particularly in the early rounds – as an unwanted distraction the celebrations that greeted the Hammers’ win showed how important it can be in galvanising a club and a fanbase. There has certainly been no lack of excitement in the Greek capital this week with a local team involved while Italian fans are already in position to roar their team on to success.

Who is favourite for tomorrow’s clash?

Despite being effectively the way team, Fiorentina are favourites with bet365 offering odds of 7/5 for them to go one better than last year and win inside 90 minutes.

Olympiacos are at 21/10.

Click here for a full betting preview and to receive the best promotional offers on the market

Why was the UEFA Europa Conference League introduced?

It had been rumoured UEFA were planning a third continental competition for some time. The thinking behind it was to provide European football for more clubs, thus increasing the tension in their domestic leagues by offering more qualification spots for teams lower down the table.

It was also a ploy to ward off the increasing threat of a Super League by providing a boost to clubs and associations that they and their members can enjoy the financial trappings of playing in Europe.

The winners of the competition automatically qualify for the following season’s Europa League.

What is the future of the UEFA Europa Conference League?

There are no plans to change the format but it is being rebranded to the UEFA Conference League from the start of next season.

How can I watch the game?

It’s not a match you want to miss. You can watch it on TNT Sports on the UK, or via one of the sites below.

See our piece on the full streaming options here

Picture of Jon Fisher

Jon Fisher

Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.

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