Aston Villa clinch first Champions League spot since 1982-83

Aston Villa have clinched Champions League football for the first time since the 1982-83 season and for the first time ever since the competition was rebranded from the European Cup.

The more-than 40-year wait for a return to Europe’s top club competition ended on Tuesday when Manchester City beat Tottenham to ensure Villa would finish the season in the Premier League‘s top four.

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Villa are on 68 points with one match to play after picking up a point in a late comeback against Liverpool on Monday. Tottenham are five points behind in fifth place on 63 points after their loss to City and can no longer move into the top four.

Unai Emery’s side qualified for Europe last season and played in the third-tier Europa Conference League, where they lost in the semifinals to Olympiacos.

Aston Villa won the European Cup in 1981-82 and lost to Bayern Munich in the quarterfinals in 1982-83 in their last appearance.

The competition was rebranded from the European Cup to the Champions League in 1992, so this is the first time Villa will compete in this iteration of the UEFA tournament.