UEFA discuss abolishing the away-goals rule 1 year ago

UEFA discuss abolishing the away-goals rule

The rule was enacted in 1965.

The away goals rule could become a thing of the past in European competition. Uefa are holding a meeting on Wednesday in Rome where they will discuss the abolition of the rule, according to reports in Germany.

The rule means that, if the score is level after two legs, the team with more away goals will advance. Abolition of the rule was discussed at a meeting of coaches in Switzerland last year, prompting the current review.

"The coaches think that scoring goals away is not as difficult as it was in the past," Giorgio Marchetti, UEFA's deputy general secretary, said.

"They think the rule should be reviewed and that's what we will do."

While some would be in favour of keeping the rule, it could just as easily be argued that it is no longer fit for purpose. It came into action back in 1965 as a measure to encourage teams to practice attacking play in away games.

However, there is a sense that the playing field has been levelled and away goals now carry too much emphasis. In the past, playing away from home was more difficult than it currently is, due to travel concerns, hostile crowds and poor pitches.

It could also be argued that rather than encourage attacking play from away teams, it can lead to the team playing at home in the first leg to be cautious and defensive in order to prevent the away team scoring.