UEFA president Ceferin to consider future 'final eight' Champions League format

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has said the single-game knockout format used in the Champions League this year from the quarterfinals onwards could be revisited in the future.

The format was changed in order to allow the competition to be completed in a shorter time span after the coronavirus pandemic halted play for several months across Europe in March.

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Eight clubs headed to Lisbon and Bayern Munich will meet Paris Saint-Germain in the final on Sunday.

"We were forced to do it but in the end we see that we found out something new," Ceferin told Reuters. "So we will think about it in the future for sure."

Ceferin said that without a second leg to fall back on, teams have been forced to go for goals.

"[There has been] not so much tactics," he added. "If it is one match, if one team scores then the other has to score as soon as possible. If it is two-legged system then there is still time to win the next match.

"More exciting matches for sure but of course we also have to think about the fact that we have less matches and broadcasters [can] say: 'you don't have as many matches as before, this is different' so we will have to discuss when this crazy situation ends."

The "final eight" tournament took place without fans in stadiums and the prospect of supporters from eight clubs descending on one city could cause security issues among other logistical problems.

The existing two-legged format is locked in place contractually until 2024-2025 but discussions are due to begin later this year on the structure for the competition for the next phase.

The tournament was played over 11 days and clearing space in the congested international calendar would be another obstacle to overcome but Ceferin is intrigued by the possibilities.

"Look for sure it is a very interesting format," he said. "Now, I doubt as much as the calendar is now, that we could do a final eight [tournament], because it would take too much time.

"But a format with one match and a system like it is now, I think it would be much more exciting than the format that was before.

"If we would play this system then, but we haven't discussed with anyone its just an idea, we would play in one city. If you play in one city, you can have a week of football or something like that. But it is far too early to think about it.

"We have seen it as a big success and the viewership over TV has been huge, maybe it also good because it is August and people are at home, some of them at least, but interesting, interesting tournament."