The UEFA Intertoto Cup, also abbreviated as UI Cup and originally called the International Football Cup, was a summer football competition for European clubs that had not qualified for one of the two major UEFA competitions, the Champions League and the UEFA Cup. The competition was discontinued after the 2008 tournament. Teams who originally would have entered the Intertoto Cup now directly enter the qualifying stages of the UEFA Europa League from this point.
The tournament was founded in 1961–62, but was only taken over by UEFA in 1995.
Any club who wished to participate had to apply for entry, with the highest placed clubs (by league position in their domestic league) at the end of the season entering the competition. The club didn't necessarily have to be ranked directly below the clubs which had qualified for another UEFA competition; if the club which was in that position did not apply, they would not be eligible to compete, with the place instead going to the club which did apply.
The cup billed itself as providing both an opportunity for clubs who otherwise would not get the chance to enter the UEFA Cup and as an opportunity for sports lotteries (or pools) to continue during the summer. This reflects its background, which was as a tournament solely for football pools. In 1995, the tournament came under official UEFA sanctioning and UEFA Cup qualification places were granted. Initially, two were provided; this was increased to three after one year; but in 2006, it was again increased to the final total of 11.
Famous quotes containing the word cup:
“The morning cup of coffee has an exhiliration about it which the cheering influence of the afternoon or evening cup of tea cannot be expected to reproduce.”
—Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (18091894)