The Welsh Premier champions enter the qualifying stages of the Champions League, with the runners-up entering for the first qualifying round of the Europa League, along with the winners of the end-of-season play-offs.
A place in the second qualifying round of the Europa League is awarded to the winners of the Welsh Cup. If the winners of the Welsh Cup have already qualified for Europe via their league placing, the eighth-placed team takes their place in the Welsh Premier play-offs.
Results in Europe have been mixed, with some notable successes – such as Barry Town’s run to the first round proper of the UEFA Cup in 1996-97, drawing with Aberdeen 3-3 at Jenner Park, and Barry’s 3-1 victory over FC Porto in the 2001-02 Champions League – combined with some heavy defeats, such as Rhyl’s 12-0 aggregate defeat to Partizan Belgrade of Serbia in 2009-10.
Despite Rhyl’s poor showing in 2009-10, results in Europe have generally improved with all Welsh sides now entering Europe with the realistic aim of at least winning their first tie.
As the structure of European football has developed several competitions that were in existence have ceased to operate.
The Champions League replaced the European Cup as the top Uefa competition around the time the Welsh Premier league came into existence in 1992-93, but since the league has been running three competitions that Welsh sides formerly played in have ceased to exist.
The Cup Winners’ Cup was formerly contested by the cup winners from each member nation been those teams now enter the Europa League.
The Uefa Cup has also been amalgamated into the Europa League, with preliminary rounds for that competition equating to the Intertoto Cup, which was a transition competition during the time when restructuring was taking place.