UEFA chief makes Scottish Champions League appeal as Rangers carry coefficient fight
Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP via Getty Images

UEFA chief calls for Scottish Champions League place as Rangers carry coefficient fight

Lars Christer-Olsen, a former UEFA chief executive and influential figure in Euro competition reform, has called for the Champions of Scotland to be allocated a Champions League spot in comments which will excite Rangers fans.

UEFA are currently in discussions with their representatives looking at reform to the competition ahead of 2024 with much of the talk centring around another three spots opening up in the Champions League.

Influential UEFA chief Lars Christer-Olsen has called for the Scottish Champions – likely to be Rangers this year – should be given an automatic Champions League place. (Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images)

But instead of handing these spots – which form part of the “Swiss model” of reform to the competition – to fifth or sixth place finishers in any of the so-called Top Five leagues, Christer-Olsen wants the likes of Scotland, Denmark and Switzerland to benefit instead.

“We think the three extra positions should be allocated in a way that more associations can be represented in the Champions League,” said Christer-Olsen [the Herald].

“It must not be given to one of the ‘Big Five’ associations.

“We are also of the opinion that the so-called country cap of the Champions League should stay at maximum five teams from the same association.

“We actually prefer champions from Scotland, Denmark or Switzerland to qualify – rather than team number six from England or Spain.”

The comments came before Rangers’ triumphant 4-3 Europa League victory in Belgium against Royal Antwerp which emboldens the Scottish UEFA coefficient cause.

The Gers have transformed Scottish fortunes on the continental stage under manager Steven Gerrard with the latest result keeping hopes of an automatic Champions League space alive.

Scotland are currently in 11th place in the rankings, locked in a battle with Ukraine who have both Shakhtar Donestk and Dynamo Kiev competing in the Europa League.

Should the Gers manage to steer the country to that spot – and both the Champions League winners and Europa League winners have already qualified in their home countries – then Scotland will get an automatic Champions League group stage spot for 22/23.

Borna Barisic got the winner from the penalty spot for Rangers as the club continue to fly the Scottish flag in Europe. (Photo by DIRK WAEM / BELGA / AFP) / Belgium OUT (Photo by DIRK WAEM/BELGA/AFP via Getty Images)

But if Christer-Olsen has his way, the nation could have one permanently before long in a reformed competition.

Rangers downed Belgian side Royal Antwerp 4-3 to put one foot in the last 16 ahead of what promises to be a special campaign for the club.

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