The Europa League certainly isn't the easiest tournament to compete in and it could be hindering the domestic league performances of the clubs involved.
There are often a lot of complaints that certain leagues over Europe are a one-horse race, especially divisions like the Bundesliga and Ligue 1. But if clubs that are finishing in fifth and even sixth place could focus more on their domestic performances, would leagues around the continent be more of a competition?
Problems of the Europa Ligue
There is a huge gap in quality from Europa League sides to Champions League sides in the Bundesliga. Bayern Munich, for example, are worlds ahead of any of their domestic competitors.
Clubs like Wolfsburg and Borussia Monchengladbach simply cannot come anywhere near Bayern in the table and struggle to reach that Champions League spot. The Bundesliga could benefit dramatically if the Europa League did not interfere with the aforementioned clubs.
The same issue occurs in Ligue 1; PSG ended up 28 points clear of fifth position last season and it doesn't look like that gap is going to decrease anytime soon in the French top-flight division.
Premier League examples
It is also an issue for the Premier League. Tottenham are going well in their Europa League group after recently defeating Asteras Tripolis in Greece, but aren't doing too well in their domestic league.
Again, it's a high possibility that this is down to their European distractions, they have to play on a Thursday night and then regroup and focus on their next domestic league match, which usually follows three to four days later. Mauricio Pochettino doesn't exactly manage a team with a lot of squad depth, and so playing three games in the period of seven days must destroy his side's fitness.
Everton are in the same situation, and they probably have less squad depth than Spurs and arguably don't hold as much quality in their first team. The club from the blue half of Merseyside are also struggling to get a run of form together in the Premier League and this could be the evidence that the Europa League hinders teams.
Everton had a brilliant season last time around, coming in fifth place ahead of Tottenham themselves. This was a season without European commitments and you'd think the sooner they get knocked out of the Europa League this year, the sooner they can push on in the Premier League.
Champions League benefit
Now of course the Europa League trophy is a prestigious prize to lift come the end of the season, but I am pretty certain clubs would rather have the opportunity to battle for that all important Champions League position, and no European games would make that top four finish more of a possibility.
But, more importantly, it would make the majority of leagues around Europe more entertaining if clubs didn't have to shift their attention onto Europa League matches and then perhaps we would see some new sides emerging in the Champions League.
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