UEFA Coefficient Battles 2024/25: Battle for 9th

The UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, and UEFA Conference League all get underway next week with the first qualifying round. More than 80 teams will embark on a new continental journey in what is the first season under a completely new format in September.

Following last month’s country coefficient preview series, Extratime Talk opens up another coefficient preview series, this one much shorter. We will take a look at the battles in UEFA’s five-year country coefficient ranking over the next season. While not everyone is familiar with coefficients and its significance, it plays a role in how many spots a country gets in Europe, the competitions, and the starting points for all clubs involved.

Unlike the previous series, not all countries will be mentioned in depth. The majority of them, however, will be, as those national associations are expected to be involved.

The penultimate piece in this six-article series looks at the race for ninth spot, which will involve just two countries: Turkey and Czechia. A head-to-head shootout between two nations on the rise.

Battle For Ninth Spot: The Situation

We enter the 2024/25 season with two countries off the back of stellar 2023/24 campaigns. If they can carry on from their incredible showings from a year ago, this will be a fascinating battle.

The reward on the line is a place in the third qualifying in the Champions League’s non-champions path for that country’s runner-up in 2026/27. This may not seem significant, but keeping in mind that a Europa League spot is guaranteed for this side, and that changes things.

Country2023/24 Season Coefficient2023/24 5-Year CoefficientStarting 5-Year Coefficient 2024/25
Turkey12.000 (8th)38.600 (9th)33.600
Czechia13.500 (7th)36.050 (10th)33.550

Perhaps the most fascinating part of this battle is the fact that these two are just 0.450 points apart. If this gap remains similar to this come the league phase, then we are set for a mouthwatering race between the two countries.

Battle For Ninth: The Countries Involved


Turkey outdid themselves in qualifying last summer, pulling off a stunning 20-2-2 record, which set them up for a stunning 2023/24 season. Having started the season in 13th spot, they quickly passed Scotland, Austria, Switzerland, and Serbia by the end of the summer. They easily held onto ninth spot by the end of the campaign.

Galatasaray (UCL PO)Sparta Praha (UCL Q2)
Fenerbahçe (UCL Q2)Slavia Praha (UCL Q3)
Beşiktaş (UEL PO)Viktoria Plzeň (UEL Q3)
Trabzonspor (UEL Q2)Banik Ostrava (UECL Q2)
İstanbul Başakşehir (UECL Q2)Mladá Boleslav (UECL Q2)

The scariest thing is, it could get even better for the Turks this term. Along with the country’s traditional ‘Big 3’ of Galatasaray, Fenerbahçe, and Beşiktaş, they are joined by Trabzonspor and İstanbul Başakşehir. There is thus not out of the question that Turkey ends up with all of their teams in the league phases this fall, something they nearly did a year ago. Beyond that, it could be a record-breaking year for Turkish football in Europe.


While much was expected from Czechia last season, few expected them to go from being involved in the race for 15th place, to passing Serbia, Austria, Switzerland, and Scotland for 10th place. Yet, that is exactly what they did. Sparta Praha and Slavia Praha made the Europa League last 16, while Viktoria Plzeň went one step further in the Conference League, to the quarterfinals. The 13.500 points won last term was the seventh most of all the countries last term, and the second best of the non-big 5 countries.

Heading into 2024/25, Sparta, Slavia, and Viktoria Plzeň are joined by Banik Ostrava and Mladá Boleslav in Europe. Like Turkey, the Czechs return to having five teams in Europe. The trio who went far last term will have high expectations to have a similar showing this time around. If Banik and/or Mladá Boleslav can make at least the league phase, watch out for Czechia once again.

The Decisive Factor in the Battle For Ninth

The race for ninth place will have a few key factors. Perhaps the biggest one is the answer to this question: who will do better with five teams in Europe? Seeing that both countries have one more team in Europe this year than last, it will take a bit of adjustment. Wins (and draws) reward less coefficient points than last year. Thus, whichever of the two countries handle this better will likely prove to be the winner.

As for how many coefficient points it will take, expect something in the region of 14.000 points this year, possibly a tad more. A strong summer in qualifying will be pivotal for both countries, something Turkey took advantage of a year ago.

From there, at least three teams will need to make the knockout rounds, something Czechia was successful with last year. Ideally, having at least one quarterfinalist would also be important. Lastly, should we have any more Turkey vs Czechia matches in Europe – like we did at the Euros this summer – then any such match would be must-wins.

Prediction: Who Will Finish Ninth?

If last season was anything to go off, this race is going to be tons of fun. It was a tale of two halves it felt like. Turkey dominated the qualifying rounds, picking up more than double the wins. However, from the group stages on, it was Czechia who was much better, with 15 wins to Turkey’s nine. That ultimately resulted in them earning more coefficient points.

But, who will manage to outdo the other this season? And, like previously asked, who will better adjust to having five teams in Europe again? The latter question is where Turkey has the upper hand. They have the stronger group of clubs as a collective, which is what should decide the race. The Turks should hold onto ninth place, and without too much trouble either. So long as they improve their league phase showing, this could actually end up being a blowout.

It is unlikely that we will see Czechia have a complete regression. However, for them to repeat their 2023/24 showing is quite the ask. It is quite unlikely that we will see either of Banik Ostrava or Mladá Boleslav in the Conference League proper. In comparison, Trabzonspor and İstanbul Başakşehir will have a very high chance of making the competition’s league phase, with Trabzonspor even having the potential of making the Europa League proper.

Both of these countries hold a gap of almost 5.000 points over Israel in 11th, and really should not fear losing their place in the top 10 of the ranking – at least for this season. The task should be to build on from last year’s success, and if they do that, then they will be safe for top 10 for this term and beyond.

We could be in for another really good battle, or we could be in for a beatdown. How this battle turns out remains to be seen. Nevertheless, two countries with their domestic football on the rise, should be ones to keep an eye out for this season and beyond.

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