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Introduced in 1971 as the UEFA Cup, it replaced the Inter-City Fairs Cup.
The UEFA Cup was a third-tier competition from 1971 to 1999 before the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup was discontinued, and as such it is still often referred to as "C3".
[according to whom?] Clubs have the right to participate in the UEFA Cup.
In 1999, the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup was merged with the UEFA Cup and ceased to exist as a separate competition.
In the 2004–05 season, a group stage was added before the knockout stage.
The competition received its current name in 2009 after a change in format.
The 2009 rebrand included a merger with the UEFA Intertoto Cup, creating an expanded competition format with an expanded group stage and changes to qualifying criteria.
The winner of the UEFA Europa League qualifies for the UEFA Super Cup and, from the 2014–15 season, the following season's UEFA Champions League through the group stage, as well as the UEFA-CONMEBOL Club Challenge from 2023.
The largest number of victories belongs to Spanish clubs, followed by teams from England and Italy.
The title was won by 29 clubs, 14 of which won it more than once.
The most successful club in the tournament is Sevilla with seven titles.
Colombian striker Radamel Falcao holds the record for most goals scored in a single season in the tournament.
The UEFA Cup was preceded by the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup, a European football competition held between 1955 and 1971.
The competition grew from 11 teams in the first edition to 64 teams in the last edition, which was held in 1970–71.
It was replaced by the UEFA Cup, a new seasonal competition of the confederation, which has different regulations, format and disciplinary committee.