What happens if you finish second in the Europa Conference League group stages?

James Cormack
Group stage draw for UEFA Europa Conference League in Istanbul
Group stage draw for UEFA Europa Conference League in Istanbul / Anadolu Agency/GettyImages

UEFA introduced a third club competition ahead of the 2021/22 season in a bid to give teams from lower-ranked member associations a chance to compete at the highest level.

The new competition was enjoyed by many during its inaugural iteration as Jose Mourinho's AS Roma claimed victory over Feyenoord in the final.

The group stage of the 2022/23 competition has almost concluded with the draw for the play-off round swiftly following. The eight group winners will qualify automatically for the round of 16, but what happens to those that finish second in their group?

Here's everything you need to know.

2022/23 Europa Conference League knockout round play-offs - how it works

The 2022/23 Europa Conference League play-off round will see the eight group runners-up from the competition take on the eight teams dropping down from the Europa League (for finishing third in their group).

Just one of the 16 teams have been confirmed in the play-offs through five matchdays (AEK Larnaca), with the final 15 teams set to be decided following the conclusion of the group stage.

These two-legged ties will take place on 16 and 23 February, 2023.

Why is there a knockout play-off round in the Europa Conference League?

Both the Europa League and the newly-established Conference League boast a knockout play-off round to determine the final eight teams in the round of 16 of each competition.

With the number of teams competing in the Europa League being reduced from 48 to 32 with 32 teams also taking part in the Conference League group stage, a door was opened for the eight third-place finishers in the Europa League to drop down into the first knockout phase of the Conference League.

When is the 2022/23 Europa Conference League knockout play-off round draw and how can I watch?

The 2022/23 Europa Conference League knockout round play-off draw is will start at 14:00 CET (13:00 GMT) on 7 November. It takes place at the House of European Football in Nyon, Switzerland.

The draw will be live streamed on UEFA's official website.

What’s next after the play-offs?

The eight winners of the play-off ties will advance into the round of 16 of the competition where the eight group winners await. Those defeated will be eliminated.

A traditional knockout tournament will ensue up until the final with all ties being played over two legs.

Where is the Europa Conference League final?

The 2022/23 Europa Conference League will be held at the Fortuna Arena in Prague, Czechia on Wednesday 7 June, 2023.

The stadium boasts a capacity of 19,370 and is home to SK Slavia Prague.