New Super League format to be decided on Tuesday
The new format of the 14-team Super League will be discussed and decided upon during Tuesday’s Board of Directors meeting.
On Tuesday, a Super League Board of Directors will take place where many topics will be discussed and decided upon, including the new format of the Super League. Greece’s top flight will consists of 14 teams in the upcoming season, as opposed to this past year’s 16 teams, after the restructuring of Greece’s professional football leagues. The 2019/20 Super League start date will also be announced after Tuesday’s meeting.
A special committee was appointed to come up with format ideas for the 14-team Super League. This committee is made up of representatives from PAOK, Olympiacos, AEK, Panathinaikos, Atromitos, and Asteras Tripolis.
Three formats will be brought to the table on Tuesday, two of which include playoffs to decide the champion, European places, and relegation while the other format includes a third round of fixtures to be held in between the first and second round of games.
Three formats to be discussed
The first proposal includes a regular season with 26 games for each club, home and away matches against each team, followed by playoffs separated into two groups. The first group would consist of teams ranked 1st-6th and will decide the Super League champion and the European places for next season. The second group, a playout group, will consist of teams ranked 7th-14th with the bottom two teams suffering relegation to the Super League 2.
The second proposal includes a regular season with 26 games for each club, home and away matches against each team, followed by playoffs separated into three groups. The first group would consist of teams ranked 1st-4th and will decide the Super League champion and the European places for next season. The second group will consist of teams ranked 5th-8th and will decide the final European spot for next season (assuming the Cup champion has assured a place in Europe via their Super League finish). The third and final group will consist of the teams ranked 9th-14th with the bottom two teams relegated to the Super League 2.
The third proposal is Minas Lysandrou’s (current Super League president) original idea of holding a third round of fixtures in between the first and second round of the regular season. This third round would take place in December and January with teams separated into two groups of seven based on their first round standings. The first group will consist of teams ranked in odd numbers in the standings (first, third, fifth, etc.) while the second group will consist of the teams ranked in even numbers of the standings (second, fourth sixth, etc.). Teams within each group will play each other once. The points from the first round of games will carry over to this in between round and the points from this round will be carried over into the second half of the season. The standings at the end of the season will be the final standings. Most teams have reacted negatively to this proposal and will likely not be passed in the meeting.
Both Novasports and ERT, the Super League’s broadcasting companies, are for the playoff and playout formats proposed as this would add more games to the season and draw more interest from fans if the champion is decided via the playoff route.
Cup Format to be discussed
In addition to the league’s format, the format of the Greek Cup will also be discussed. The Super League will decide on a format for the Cup and present it to the Hellenic Football Federation (EPO), the Cup’s organizing body, with hopes of the EPO’s approval.
According to various sources, the EPO will change the Cup format beginning next season. Teams from all three professional leagues, Super League, Super League 2, Football League, and the cup winners from the amateur division (EPS) are expected to take part in the 2019/20 Cup.
The Super League’s goal is to abolish the group stages and move the competition solely to a knockout format.