The draw for the 2021/22 Champions League group stage has been completed and like always there’s plenty to sink our teeth into.
It feels like some time ago when Chelsea, under the leadership of newly-appointed boss Thomas Tuchel, surprised Premier League rivals Manchester City to lift a second European Cup title.
This evening’s draw saw the four Premier League representatives (Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City and Manchester United) learn their fates as each looks to bring the much-coveted trophy back to England for a sixth time this century.
Who awaits Premier League clubs in Europe 2021/22?
- Chelsea: Juventus, Zenit, Malmo (Group H)
- Liverpool: Atlético Madrid, Porto, Milan (Group B)
- Man City: PSG, RB Leipzig, Club Brugge (Group A)
- Man Utd: Villarreal, Atalanta, Young Boys (Group F)
Premier League champions Manchester City were drawn out first and were subsequently placed in Group A per the guidelines. Joining them were 2019 finalists and pre-tournament favourites PSG, who can now call upon six-time Ballon d’Or recipient Lionel Messi, as well as RB Leipzig and Club Brugge.
The current holders Chelsea were next out and found themselves leading Group H which includes fellow two-time winners Juventus, Zenit — who are hosting this season’s final — and Swedish outfit Malmo. Liverpool, chasing a seventh title, were dropped into Group B where they found past foes in the guises of Atlético Madrid, Porto and the returning AC Milan.
As for Manchester United they have a chance to avenge last season’s Europa League final loss as they were drawn in Group F alongside Villarreal which also involves Atalanta and Young Boys. Elsewhere, arguably the biggest draw comes in Group E with Bayern Munich and Barcelona grouped together. They were joined by Benfica and Dynamo Kyiv.
2021/22 group stage draws in full:
Group A: Man City, PSG, RB Leipzig, Club Brugge
Group B: Atlético Madrid, Liverpool, Porto, Milan
Group C: Sporting, Borussia Dortmund, Ajax, Besiktas
Group D: Inter Milan, Real Madrid, Shakhtar Donetsk, Sheriff Tiraspol
Group E: Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Benfica, Dynamo Kyiv
Group F: Villarreal, Man Utd, Atalanta, Young Boys
Group G: Lille, Sevilla, FC Salzburg, Wolfsburg
Group H: Chelsea, Juventus, Zenit, Malmo
When will the group stage fixtures be played?
Unlike last season the Champions League group phase kicks off in September and not a month later. We’ll have one fixture in that aforementioned month before two November games leading to an early December finish. By then Europe’s big hitters would be hoping they have already secured passage into the knockout phase.
Matchday 1: 14/15 September
Matchday 2: 28/29 September
Matchday 3: 19/20 October
Matchday 4: 2/3 November
Matchday 5: 23/24 November
Matchday 6: 7/8 December