The Champions League draw for the 2017/18 campaign was held in Monaco this evening. Real Madrid, who are looking to win the elite competition for a third successive time, got the toughest draw of the lot with Tottenham Hotspur and Borussia Dortmund in the same group. Dortmund surprisingly topped their group ahead of Los Blancos last season, and Zinedine Zidane’s side will have a test of their credentials with Spurs no walkovers themselves.
Mancunian duo Manchester City and Manchester United have got relatively easy groups to contend with games against Napoli and Benfica respectively, likely to define the top-two positions. The same goes to Liverpool, who could enjoy an extended run with Sevilla the only big threat in their group.
Antonio Conte’s Chelsea have received a warm welcome on their European return with trips to Atletico Madrid and AS Roma likely to test their relatively slim squad as of now. Barcelona and Juventus will take on each other for the third time in four seasons and results could go either way with both teams in a minor transition phase.
Considering the strengths and weaknesses, Group G could be the toughest of them all with not much to choose between Monaco, FC Porto, Besiktas and RB Leipzig. Monaco surprisingly reached the final four last year, but they are more or less weakened by key exits this summer. Besiktas and Porto will be around to take any slip from the Principality outfit whilst debutants Leipzig could surprise the trio with their variety of young talent.
The Champions League draw for the 2017/18 season is as follows:
Group A: Benfica, Manchester United, FC Basel, CSKA Moscow.
Group B: Bayern Munich, Paris Saint-Germain, Anderlecht, Celtic.
Group C: Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, Roma, FK Qarabag.
Group D: Juventus, Barcelona, Olympiakos, Sporting CP.
Group E: Spartak Moscow, Sevilla, Liverpool, NK Maribor.
Group F: Shakhtar Donetsk, Manchester City, Napoli, Feyenoord.
Group G: Monaco, FC Porto, Besiktas, RB Leipzig.
Group H: Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, Tottenham, APOEL Nicosia.
Image – Creative Commons