Tottenham coach Andre Villas-Boas thinks teams that finish in third-place and fail to qualify for the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 should not gain automatic entry to the Europa League, Europe’s second-tier competition. Tottenham on Thursday qualified for the Europa League Round of 32 with a comfortable 3-1 win against Panathinaikos. After the game, the Portuguese coach lamented the fact that his team could face one of the Champions League casualties-- Benfica, Olympiakos or CFR Cluj -- in the next phase.
"I think it's extremely unfair," the 35-year-old said. "It would be much fairer if the clubs came in to the Europa League when they are knocked out of the last 16 of the Champions League. You can't give a bonus to teams who have failed, and in the situation as it stands, teams fail in the Champions League and are promoted to the Europa League, which, in my opinion, is a massive bonus.”
Should Spurs qualify for the Round of 16, AVB could face Chelsea, his former team, which he said is a challenge both he and his players would relish. "Sometimes it's destiny. Hopefully if we go through we can meet each other," Villas-Boas said. "They have a team that can win the trophy, so they will be up to the late stages of the competition. We hope to do so. If we cross it is going to be two magnificent games for sure."