France in Europe: 2024/25 Season Preview

The 2024/25 European season is quickly approaching, with 236 clubs set to compete in UEFA’s continental club competitions this season.

With the first qualifying round draws occurring next week, Extratime Talk will be providing a comprehensive coefficient preview. Between now and then, each country will be previewed, and all clubs participating in Europe for the 2024/25 season are discussed.

In these articles, we will provide analyses of what to expect from each country in Europe. We will explore what is on the line from a coefficient standpoint, and the keys to succeeding, in that country’s case.

The 39th piece in this coefficient preview series looks at France. It will be a big year for the Ligue 1 teams, but here is a look how the clubs will do next season.

France in Europe: Country Profile

Previous Season Coefficient (Rank)16.250 (4th)
Previous Season’s 5-Year Coefficient (Rank)66.831 (5th)
Starting 5-Year Coefficient (Rank)57.736 (5th)

For the first time since 2008/09 – the days of the UEFA Cup – France will have seven teams in Europe. That is due to the UEFA club competition reforms, which gave France – the country ranked fifth in the five-year coefficient ranking – an extra Champions League spot. It will be interesting to see how France handles having seven teams in Europe next term after so long with six.

The 2023/24 season was a good one for French football. For the second time in three years, France had all of their teams reach the knockout rounds in Europe. PSG and Marseille made the Champions League and Europa League semifinals, respectively, while Lille made the Conference League quarterfinals. That is something promising to build off going into this 2024/25 season.

France in Europe: Club Profile

ClubQualified AsRound of EntryTotal European SeasonsLast Season’s Performance5-Year Club Coefficient (2023/24)5-Year Country Coefficient Contribution, 2023/24 (%)
Paris Saint-GermainDomestic ChampionUCL League Phase33UCL Semfinals116.00019.333 (28.93%)
AS MonacoDomestic Runner-upUCL League Phase33N/A24.0004.833 (7.23%)
BrestDomestic Third PlaceUCL League PhaseDebutN/A13.366N/A
LOSC LilleDomestic Fourth PlaceUCL Q3, League Path15UECL Quarterfinals47.0008.083 (12.09%)
OGC NiceDomestic Fifth PlaceUEL League Phase14N/A17.0002.833 (4.24%)
Olympique LyonnaisDomestic Sixth PlaceUEL League Phase37N/A44.0007.333 (10.97%)
RC LensDomestic Seventh PlaceUECL Play-off Round15UEL Knockout Round Play-offs13.3661.833 (2.74%)

Paris Saint-Germain’s domination of French football continued in 2023/24, as they won their third league title in a row, and 10th in their last 12 seasons. In winning the Coupe de France as well, Les Parisiens clinched their fifth domestic double. Yet, for all their success in French football, that one illustrious prize – that being the UEFA Champions League – alludes them. After losing in the semifinals in May, they will be back to try and finally claim the one major trophy missing from their cabinet.

AS Monaco finished second in the league, making a return to the UCL proper since 2018/19. After missing out on European football last term, Le Monegasques reached the knockout round playoffs of the Europa League back in 2022/23. Interestingly, the previously mentioned 2018/19 season was the last time Monaco failed to make the knockout rounds in Europe.

Stade Brestois will be making their European bow in the UCL proper after pipping Lille for third. It was a historic year for Brest, who finished in the highest position they have ever done in French football. It will be a big step up for Les Pirates, seeing that they will battle some of Europe’s best across the league phase.

Lille, having lost third place on the final day, will have to enter the third qualifying round. Their UECL quarterfinal showing in the spring was their first appearance at that round of a European club competition. Whether it happens in the UCL or UEL, Les Dogues will aim to make it back there.

OGC Nice missed out on UCL football by a hair, with fifth place being enough for the UEL. Les Aiglons made the quarterfinals of the Conference League when they were last in Europe, back in 2022/23. Before that, Nice’s only previous continental quarterfinals came again Real Madrd in the European Cup, in 1956/57 and again three years later.

One of France’s biggest clubs, Olympique Lyonnais, completed a stunning comeback throughout the second half of the season. They went from being bottom of the league to a sixth place finish, joining Nice in the UEL. A Coupe de France final defeat should do little to dampen the spirits of the seven-time league champions. In four of their last five runs in continental action, Lyon has reached at least the quarterfinals.

France’s Conference League representative this term will come in the form of RC Lens. Les Sang et Or competed in their fifth group stage last season, but will have to start in the UECL playoff round. Having reached the UEL’s knockout round playoffs last term, they will push to go even further this time around.

France’s Season Ambitions

For French football, there will be two aims for next season: compete for a European Performance Spot with the other ‘Big 5’ leagues, and put further distance between them and Netherlands for fifth spot. Based on last season, the latter goal should not be too difficult. As for the former, that is a lot more challenging.

France should also be aiming for 15.000 coefficient points minimum, although if they are to seriously challenge for an EPS, then 20.000 points will be the goal, minimum. In two of the last three seasons, France collected more than 15.000 points, but did not reach 20.000. The closest they came was in 2021/22, where they earned 18.416. If France’s clubs can all have a year like that one, then the country should reach 20.000 points.

What a Good Year Would Look Like for French Football

A good year for French football would see them have all their teams in the knockout rounds again. That is something the country could get used to, and if it happens again – especially now that there is an extra team – the seven clubs would deserve a ton of credit.

Coefficient-wise, a good year for France would see them hit around 18.000 points. Adjusting their score from last year, and they would have hit about 18.500 points, when considering the extra games in the UCL and UEL. Thus, a score of 18.000 would be a good year for French football, and constitute a good season for their standards.

What to Expect from France 2024/25

So, what can we expect from France in 2024/25? For most countries in this preview series, the answer is a bit more clear-cut. France is one of those countries where one feels that anything could happen. Speaking with French football expert Luke Entwistle, each team’s form in the competition they are in will play a pivotal role for the French coefficient.

There is reason for pessimism: PSG will enter the tournament without Kylian Mbappé and the consequence of his departure on Les Parisiens is not yet known,” said Entwistle, highlighting PSG’s potentially perilous situation. Regarding France’s coefficient situation for 2024/25, Entwistle highlighted an issue from French sides in recent years. “The transition at (Lille), coupled with French sides’ difficulties of passing through the play-off rounds in recent campaigns, doesn’t inspire optimism,” said the editor-in-chief of Get French Football News.

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