Despite a recent poor run of form and now the sacking of Jose Mourinho, qualifying for a European competition in 2021-22 is still an attainable goal in what has become an otherwise lost season for Tottenham.
Currently sitting sixth in the Premier League, Spurs still have chances to qualify for any of the three UEFA competitions – Champions League (albeit very slim), Europa League, and Europa Conference League – for next year.
Here are the ways Spurs can still reach and compete in a UEFA-sanctioned club tournament for next season.
Typically to reach the top club competition in world football, Spurs would have to finish in the top four of the Premier League standings or win the Europa League.
With the disaster in Zagreb having knocked the club out of this season’s Europa League, the only way to reach the Champions League is through a top-four finish.
Currently sitting sixth with 53 points from 33 matches, Tottenham sits two points behind surprise West Ham for the final spot in the competition.
With only five matches remaining and rivals having games in hand, Spurs chances of reaching the competition are close to none.
With top-four aspirations at the beginning of this season and the chances of winning a trophy seemingly high, a blown 2-0 first-leg lead in the Round of 16 versus Dinamo Zagreb has Spurs’ fans feeling a bit uneasy about possibly qualifying for the second-tier competition again.
Even with this season’s European failure, entry into the Europa League next season would likely give the club a chance to end its current 13-year trophy drought.
To reach the competition, teams typically must finish fifth in the final table or win the FA Cup.
While finishing fifth is still within reach for Tottenham being four points back of Chelsea, the team can finish sixth and still qualify.
With this season’s FA Cup final being contested by two teams inside the top five – Leicester City and Chelsea, Spurs can finish sixth and qualify for Europa League if either of the two clubs wins the trophy and maintains a top-five finish.
If the FA Cup winner finishes in the top five, the Europa League spot is given to the team next in the table, or in this case, a sixth-place Tottenham.
There is even a possibility, although remote, that Spurs could finish seventh and still reach the Europa League.
If Chelsea emerge victorious in the Champions League and Arsenal in the Europa League and therefore both automatically qualify for next season’s UCL AND either club finish sixth AND either Chelsea or Leicester City win the FA Cup but have already qualified for Europe through the league table, then the FA Cup holders European spot drops to the next team in the standings, in this scenario, a seventh-place finish. And breath!
Europa Conference League
If Spurs win the League Cup against Manchester City on Sunday, they will qualify for the new third-tier Conference League next season while simultaneously ending a trophy drought that dates back to 2008.
That’s the simplest way to reach a European competition next year and although it’s by far the least desirable, it would give the club a chance to win a trophy in back-to-back seasons.
What would you like to see? Where will they end up? Which competition gives Tottenham the best chance for silverware next season?
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