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UEFA Champions League: England, Spain to have four automatic spots in group stages

​From next season, Spain, Germany, England and Italy will each have four teams that qualify automatically for the Champions League group stages.

Before now, the first three teams at the end of each season earned automatic spots, while the team that finished fourth went through the qualifying rounds.

However, recent reforms mean only the top 10 European leagues, have automatic access.

Previously, champions from the top 12 European leagues were guaranteed a place in the group stages of the Champions League.

Going forward, Eredivisie champions will not get an automatic place in the Champions League group stage, as the new UEFA rankings put the Dutch league in 12th place in Europe.

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A Dutch club has not won a European trophy since 2002, when Feyenoord beat Borussia Dortmund in the Uefa Cup final.

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