New Jupiler Pro League season starts on July 28
The outlines of the football calendar for the 2023-2024 season are fixed. In the Jupiler Pro League, the first ball rolls on Friday 28 July. Two weeks later, we kick off the Challenger Pro League. By 26 May 2024 at the latest, we will know the champion, the promoted and relegated teams. CEO Lorin Parys: "Next season, we will invest in transparency for our fans and communicate four instead of seven calendar updates."
The Belgian Supercup will kick off the new season on the weekend of 21 July. The first league match of the 2023-2024 season in the Jupiler Pro League is scheduled for Friday 28 July. The regular league lasts 30 matchdays, with an extended winter break between 28 December and 18 January 2024, and has its apotheosis on the weekend of 15 March 2024. Two weeks later, on 29 March, the play-offs kick off. On Sunday 26 May at the latest, we will know who takes the national title.
In the Challenger Pro League, the regular competition runs from Friday 11 August to Sunday 21 April 2024. The 16 participating teams will get a rest from 18 December to 11 January 2024. The play-offs in the Challenger Pro League will take place between 26 April and 26 May 2024. The Croky Cup final will go ahead on Thursday 9 May 2024, which is a national holiday.
More predictability with four calendar updates
Drawing up the calendar is a puzzle every season, where a lot of stakeholders have to be taken into account. When drawing up the calendar, the calendar manager takes into account the contractual agreements with the rights holder, as well as the requirements of local authorities and police, the European football calendar and the basic principle of sporting balance (at least 48 hours of rest, staggering of top matches, alternation of away and home matches, etc.).
CEO Lorin Parys: "This season, we set up a structural dialogue with the supporters. They demanded more clarity about the playing times and wanted them more in advance. Therefore, next season we will invest in greater predictability with four instead of seven calendar updates during the season. In late June, early September, mid-December and in the third week of March before the play-offs, we will communicate the kick-off times of the games. This way, our fans can already better plan their calendar with football in mind. That does mean that, in function of the European matches and the Croky Cup matches, a number of playing moments may still shift," said Parys. "We already removed Sunday evening football at 9pm this season and that will remain the case next season. In addition, we have reduced the number of midweek match days in the regular season to the absolute minimum of two."