The Dragons must compete in a play-off to reach the Round of 16 of the Europa League.
In addition to the spirit of defeat, this defeat by Atlético Madrid, who eliminated the knockout stage of the Champions League, for only the second time in the five years in which coach Sergio Conceicao has been in charge of the team, is also. It has the distinction of being a difficult setback for the blue and white vaults that no longer include a clearance premium of €9.6 million.
With less than this important value, the Dragons now face the next challenge, in the European League, but unlike in other years, with different molds, where they will have to play a playoff, in order to be able to dispute the Round of 16 of the competition. There will be a draw on Monday at 11am that will feature the eight third-placed teams from the Champions League groups and the eight runners-up teams from the Europa League groups.
The winners of these eight play-off matches, played over two matches on February 17 and 24, will join the eight winners of the Europa League group in the Round of 16 of the competition.
As a detail, the teams that come from the champions are not considered to be seeded in this lottery, and therefore they play first at home and then away. Teams from the same country cannot face each other in this play-off match. It remains to be seen how lucky FC Porto will be after bidding farewell to the Champions League.
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