ANALYZING THE UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP STAGE

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 Champions League group stage is back! With the 2019/2020 UEFA Champions League group stage set to begin in a few days, Europe and indeed the whole world of football is getting ready for some mouthwatering encounters. The Champions League group stage has never been short of drama with the big guns, also-rans, and underdogs of the continent having a go at each other in a thrilling six-match battle.

This season’s champions league group stage will no doubt live up to the expectation of many club fans and neutrals with some potential knockout stage ties already in the group stage matchdays. Can you imagine PSG and Real Madrid squaring it up on a group stage matchday?

Another thing worthy of note for the 2019/2020 Champions League group stage is the presence of some groups with evenly matched teams. Such is groups G and H. These two groups are definitely one to look out for as there are no straight favourites. In this article. We bring you up close with the

Champions League draw results

Champions league fixtures

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP A

Knocked out by Real Madrid in the 2017/2018 season, PSG have a point to prove when they face Real Madrid in this season’s Champions League group stage. Real had an awful campaign last season by all standards and will also be looking to make a statement in a group that also contains Belgian side Club Brugge and Galatasaray from Turkey. With Ronaldo gone, it is left to Eden Hazard and co. to outwit an all-star PSG attack that just added Mauro Icardi and Pablo Sarabia to their ranks. We predict PSG and Real Madrid to qualify from the group. Any of the two remaining teams who can hold their own against the European giants should clinch the Europa League spot. The first round of matches is a crunch tie between PSG and Real Madrid at Parc des Princes on 18 Septemeber. Club Brugge host Galatasaray in Belgium the same day.

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP B

Bayern Munich, Tottenham Hotspur, Olympiacos, and Red Star Belgrade make up group B. Tottenham had a remarkable run to from the Champions League group stage to the final last season. Their remarkable comeback against Ajax in the second leg of the semifinal was a major highlight. This time they face an unfamiliar foe in Bayern Munich as the major threat in this season’s Champions League group stage. Both teams are fancied to proceed to the knockout phase barring any surprise. We predict Olympiacos to contend for the Europa League spot with Serbian outfit Red Star Belgrade. Bayern host Red Star Belgrade in Germany on 18 September while Tottenham travel to Greece to face Olympiacos in the first round of group stage matches.

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP C

Manchester City were drawn with last season’s Champions League group stage opponent Shaktar Donetsk, Dinamo Zagreb, and Champions League group stage debutant Atalanta. City were denied a place in the semifinals last season by VAR and are fancied to dominate this group. The second spot should be a slugfest between Atalanta and Shaktar Donetsk. We fancy the Ukranian side to topple Atalanta basically because of their experience in the competition. Atalanta should not be totally ruled out though considering Leicester City’s wonderful debut campaign in 2016/2017. Croatian side Dinamo Zagreb should also be able to put up a fight for third place. We predict their chances to be slim though. Shakhtar Donetsk and Dinamo Zagreb will host Manchester City and Atalanta respectively on September 18.

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP D

The fourth group of the Champions League group stage has in it perennial contenders Juventus and Atletico Madrid. They are joined by 2002 finalists Bayer Leverkusen and Russian side Lokomotiv Moscow. Juventus and Atletico Madrid played out a 4-2 aggregate thrille they when met in the knockout phase last season. Atletico will definitely be aching to get one back while Cristiano Ronaldo will be looking to continue his impressive scoring record against them. Ronaldo has scored 25 goals in 33 appearances against Atletico Madrid.

Leverkusen and Lokomotiv Moscow are not expected to offer much competition against Juve and Atletico with the two teams fancied to contend for the Europa League spot. Juventus face Atletico Madrid on 18 September while Bater Leverkusen host Lokomotiv Moscow in Germany in the first round of matches.

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP E

Napoli and Liverpool faced each other in last season’s Champions League group stage and they have been grouped together again. Napoli could not do better than a third place in last season’s Champions League group stage with Liverpool and PSG progressing to the knockout phase. They have a chance to go one step further this season in a group that also contains Genk and Red Bull Salzburg from Austria.

Liverpool who are the defending champions are expected to take maximum points from the Genk and Red Bull Salzburg with Napoli being the only competition. The English and Italian sides are also expected to progress from the group while Genk and Red Bull Salzburg slug it out for the Europa League spot. Napoli host Liverpool in the first round of matches while Genk travel to Austria to face Genk on 17 September.

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP F

Barcelona, Inter, Borussia Dortmund and Slavia Prague make up Group F. Inter who last won the competition in 2010 will have Dortmund and Barcelona to contend with in this season’s Champions League group stage. Slavia Prague gave a good show of themselves in the Europa League last season but looking at this group, they will probably be the whipping boys. We would have fancy Inter to take third place but seeing they are led by an experienced coach in Antonio Conte, they are definitely in with a chance. We predict Barcelona to top this group while either of Inter or Borussia Dortmund progress with them.

The first round of matches will be played on 17 September. Borussia Dortmund hosts Barcelona the Signal Iduna Park while Inter host Slavia Prague at the San Siro.

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP G

Group G is one of the two tricky groups in this season’s Champions League group stage. The group is made up of RB Leipzig, Lyon, Benfica, and Zenit Saint Petersburg so we expect this group to be evenly contested. The first round of matches will be played on 17 September. Benfica will host RB Leipzig in Portugal while Zenit travel to France to play Lyon. We expect a group with six thrilling matches.

Read more: Greatest Comeback in Champions League History 

UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE GROUP H

Chelsea, Ajax, Valencia, and Lille is the second tricky group in the 2019/2020 Champions League group stage. This group is pretty evenly matched. Europa League defending champions Chelsea, face a stern test in this group especially with last season giant-killers Ajax. The Dutch side eliminated Real Madrid and Juventus on their way to reaching the semifinal last season. Lille lost Nicolas Pepe to Arsenal during the just concluded transfer window but are not by any means pushovers. They should conveniently take on any team in this group. Valencia were humiliated by Arsenal in the Europa League last season but will also look to contend for a place in the knockout phase.

Ajax host Lille at the Johan Cruijff ArenA while Valencia travel to London to play Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in the first round of matches. The fixtures will be played on 17 September.

Tags: Champions League draw results, Champions league fixtures, Champions league bracket, Champions league table

 

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