Munich - It is certainly one of the tables many football fans are less familiar with, but their impact is not to be underestimated, as the UEFA coefficient ranking not only determine the number of clubs qualifying for both the Champions League and the Europa League, but are also a significant measure regarding Europe's league's status - and yet another proof of the Bundesliga's latest rise.

Germany have only claimed third spot in the ranking from the Italian Serie A at the end of the season before last, but positive results in European competitions over the last years mean the DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga's clubs even have the chance overtake the England when it comes to the end of the current campaign - the country that topped the rankings at the start of the season - while Spain appear to sit safe in first position.

Clubs united

So how does this crucial ranking actually work? To put it simple: each league's standings base on its clubs' results in the current and the four previous campaigns in European competitions. And the table determines how many teams of an association are allowed to participate in the Champions League and the Europa League the season after next.

When it comes doing the maths, however, things become a little more complicated: In the Champions League, for example, each win earns two points and a draw one, while there one gets five bonus points for progression to the last 16 and an extra point for each further round. Those numbers are then divided by the number of clubs participating in the two European competitions for a country, with the points rounded down to three decimal places.

Two German, no English sides left in Europe's elite competition

Depending on the position in the ranking, the according country's association is then entitled to nominate a set number of teams for the Champions League and the Europa League. The top three associations - currently Spain, England and Germany - are guaranteed three Champions League places and one play-off spot, while the fifth- and sixth-ranked qualify for the Europa League. Italy, fourth in coefficient ranking, are only guaranteed two spots starters in the Champions League. With 63.147 points, the Serie A have no chance of challenging the Bundesliga, while Germany are on 76.757 and second-placed England have 79.820.

With FC Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund still competing for glories in the Champions League no English representative in the last eight for the first time since 1996, there's every chance to cement their current strength in this crucial table by late May, but it remains a tight race courtesy to the progression of Tottenham, Newcastle and Chelsea to the Europa League's quarter finals.