Improving Ligue 1
Improving Ligue 1

France Football Ligue 1 - Europe's 'Big Five' Leagues

On the ranking of the top national championships in Europe, Ligue 1 ranks 5th with 48,667 points, followed closely by the Dutch league (47,300 points). Monaco's direct loss to PSV makes the gap narrow.

Although it is one of Europe's 'big five' leagues, many view it as the worst of the bunch with the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga and Serie A seeing much more success and popularity.

Ligue 1, now, is facing the prospect of becoming the 6th-ranked league among the top European leagues if French teams do not perform as well as the Dutch representatives in the European Cup this season.

This is the season that directly determines the allocation of places to attend the Champions League 2024/25, the time when Europe's most prestigious tournament changed drastically.

With the 5th place in the table of the top European leagues, Ligue 1 has 2 places to enter the Champions League group stage and 1 place to kick the 3rd qualifying round. table and 1 place in the play-off.

However, from the 2024/25 season, the team ranked 5th on this table will have 3 places to go directly to the Champions League group stage and 1 place to participate in the play-off round. The 6th place team is not entitled to an increase in benefits.

This means, if the French football representatives do not do better than the Netherlands in the European Cup this season, Ligue 1 can completely lose the 5th position in the table of the top European leagues, and only right. a spot straight into the Champions League group stage. RMC Sports describes this prospect as a shock to continental football.

Kylian Mbappe - French Football Star
Kylian Mbappe - French Football Star

With outstanding strength, PSG is likely to occupy this only slot. The remaining representatives like AS Monaco, Marseille, Lille have to compete for the only ticket to step out of the Champions League, but it is also very risky to start from the play-off round.

After beating Monaco, PSV will enter the final play-off round to compete for a ticket to the Champions League group stage with Rangers. If PSV defeats the Scottish representative, Dutch football will have 2 representatives in this season's Champions League, equal to France.

In fact, the last time a French club won the Champions League was when Marseille triumphed in 1993 - when winners Didier Deschamps and Marcel Desailly were both just 24-years-of-age - with Monaco being the only French club since then to even reach a final when they finished runners up back in 2004.

Despite France's success in international tournaments and big-spending PSG's best efforts, it's been a long time since a French club went deep in Europe and Ligue 1 is under threat of being left behind as the other four leagues continue to grow, improve and dominate continentally.

What Does Ligue 1 Have to Do to Compete With Europe's Best?

Investment: The investment has payed dividend on a domestic level with the club going on to win five of the last six Ligue 1 titles, although the club have yet to achieve continental success.

Keep Hold of Young Talent: If Ligue 1 is to become a top league once again then they'll need to keep hold of the bright prospects they currently have - such as Kylian Mbappe of PSG, Tanguay Ndombele of Lyon and Allan Saint-Maximin of Nice - rather than selling them off to foreign leagues.

Fan Interest: Fans nowadays play a vital role in the running of a club, with their presence at games spurring the team on and often acting as a 12th man during the game with their support.

Own Identities: Unfortunately teams in Ligue 1 are yet to establish their own styles like these ones, and they'll need to do so if they are to reap the rewards of the teams mentioned above.

Continental Success: It's easier said than done but if a French club won either the Champions League or the Europa League, that would only bring more attention to the league from a fan's perspective and the perspective of potential investors.

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