In Portugal, the grapes are sour after the denouement of the coefficient battle with the Netherlands. Since Thursday evening, the Netherlands has been assured of two direct Champions League tickets in the 2024/25 season. That news has also been picked up by newspapers such as Record and A bola. Their readers let us know via social media how they view the battle.
“We will never fix this again, as long as nothing changes in the scoring,” predicts a football follower on the Facebook page of A bola. “Benfica, FC Porto and Sporting Portugal will never play in the Conference League and SC Braga will only do that if they have a terrible group stage in the Europa League, like this year, but that doesn’t happen often. The Dutch might not perform well in the Champions League, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they continue to descend into the Europa League and Conference League, where they can go far.”
Article continues under video
In Portugal, the finger of blame is pointed at the top four clubs, which consists of Benfica, FC Porto, SC Braga and Sporting Portugal. “The fifth and sixth clubs are the problem. Clubs like Boavista and Vitória SC should stand up. Where are they?!” A reader of the newspaper Record agrees. “The problem is not with the big three. The problem is that other clubs, except Braga, take zero points. The Netherlands makes the difference there, because Benfica eliminated both PSV and Ajax in the Champions League last season.”
According to a follower of A bola the blame does not lie only with Portuguese clubs. “UEFA also takes some blame by giving both competitions the same score. The Champions League should always be more valuable than the Europa League.” Record also dedicated an article to the Eredivisie video starring Khalid Boulahrouz. That video caused some sneers in the comments below the article.
“A country with a larger population and five times our GDP should be ashamed that it has stood behind us for so long,” it sounds, for example. Or: “While we celebrate victories against the Dutch on the field, they celebrate passing us in the UEFA rankings. As far as I can remember, we played against their national team three or four times and won every game. is what matters to me.”
Some hope that the situation will soon turn around. “When Feyenoord, AZ and PSV start playing in the Champions League, we will quickly pass them again. This is only the case for one or two seasons.”