This Thursday (26) is the draw for what promises to be one of the best editions in the history of the Champions League. Much because of Lionel Messi and Neymar’s Paris Saint-Germain and names like Real Madrid, Barcelona, Liverpool and Juventus. Don’t be surprised. In addition to the big names, these clubs will be the highlight for being in pot 2, something unusual for someone who is used to being seeded. This can favor the creation of ‘groups of death’ when the balls are drawn in Istanbul, Turkey, at 1:00 pm (GMT).
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Reserved for the champions of the main European leagues and the last continental competitions, pot 1 has, therefore, clubs not used to such honor, such as Lille (champion of France), Villarreal (champion of the Europa League) and Sporting de Lisboa ( champion of Portugal). Of course, there are also fearsome teams like Manchester City, Inter Milan, Atletico Madrid, Chelsea and Bayern Munich.
Check out the draw pots
- Pot 1: Chelsea, Villarreal, Manchester City, Atletico de Madrid, Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, Lille and Sporting
- Pot 2: Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus, Manchester United, PSG, Liverpool, Sevilla and Borussia Dortmund
- Pot 3: Porto, Ajax, Leipzig, Atalanta, Zenit, Benfica, Salzburg Shakhtar Donetsk
- Pot 4: Milan, Wolfsburg, Brugge, Besiktas, Dynamo Kiev, Young Boys, Malmo and Sheriff Tiraspol
However, it is in pot 2 where attention is focused. Messi’s arrival in Paris was the transfer of the year, but PSG added other names with ‘glamour’ to their squad, including Spaniard Sergio Ramos, Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma, but also Dutchman Georginio Wijnaldum and Moroccan Achraf Hakimi.
All this makes PSG one of the big favorites for the title, although the ‘novela Mbappé’ continues, with Real Madrid’s interest in signing the French ace.
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Real Madrid, 13 times Champions League champion, is another of the great hopefuls for the title. Barcelona will try to show that they are able to overcome Messi’s departure and his difficult financial situation. Liverpool, Manchester United, Juventus and Sevilla are other powerful teams in Pot 2.
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Even pots 3 and 4 have potential threats. Among them are the very traditional Milan, seven times European champion, and Porto, twice champion of the tournament. There is also Ajax, who in their history won four titles in this tournament.
It is also advisable to be careful with other clubs with less history but which have been confirmed as emerging teams in recent years: RB Leipzig and Atalanta.
The groups will consist of four teams, one from each pot. Teams from the same league cannot be part of the same group. Pot 1 is made up of the champion clubs from the top six countries according to the Uefa coefficient (England, Spain, Italy, Germany, France and Portugal), as well as the winners of previous editions of the Champions League and Europa League . Pots 2, 3 and 4 are defined based on each club’s UEFA coefficient.
- September 14-15: 1st round
- September 28-29: 2nd round
- October 19-20: 3rd round
- November 2-3: 4th round
- November 23-24: 5th round
- December 7-8: 6th round
- 15/16/22/23 of February and 8/9/15/16 of March 2022: Round of 16
- April 5-6 and 12-13, 2022: Quarter Finals
- May 26-27 and 3-4, 2022: Semi-finals
- May 28, 2022: Final
- August 26: Group stage
- December 13: Round of 16
- March 18: Quarter-finals and semi-finals