UEFA has voted to scrap away goals from all European club competitions with immediate effect.
The rule, which was introduced in 1965, has since been used to determine the winner of a two-legged knockout tie where teams had scored the same number of goals on aggregate over the two matches.
Now in matches where two teams score the same number of goals over two legs, games will go straight to extra time and then penalties, if they are required.
UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin said: ‘The away goals rule has been an intrinsic part of UEFA competitions since it was introduced in 1965. However, the question of its abolition has been debated at various UEFA meetings over the last few years.
‘Although there was no unanimity of views, many coaches, fans and other football stakeholders have questioned its fairness and have expressed a preference for the rule to be abolished.
‘The impact of the rule now runs counter to its original purpose as, in fact, it now dissuades home teams – especially in first legs – from attacking, because they fear conceding a goal that would give their opponents a crucial advantage.
‘There is also criticism of the unfairness, especially in extra time, of obliging the home team to score twice when the away team has scored.
‘It is fair to say that home advantage is nowadays no longer as significant as it once was.
‘Taking into consideration the consistency across Europe in terms of styles of play, and many different factors which have led to a decline in home advantage, the UEFA Executive Committee has taken the correct decision in adopting the view that it is no longer appropriate for an away goal to carry more weight than one scored at home.’
UEFA cited statistics since the mid-1970s which showed how the gap between home and away wins had reduced.
It talked about better pitch quality, standardised pitch sizes, and even VAR as factors in the decline of home advantage.
UEFA said away goals would also no longer be a separating criteria when looking at matches between two or more sides level on points in the group stage.
However, the number of away goals scored in all group matches could be used from the additional separating criteria available if teams remain equal.