Borussia Dortmund are the next team drawn – and they’re slotted into Group F with PSG.
An email from Wolfgang Ludwig-Mayerhofer as we wait:
Looking at the four pots for the draw it seems virtually impossibe that a team from pot 3 or pot 4 might win the Champions League eventually. Do you happen to know whether there have been any winners from these pots in the past?
Answers on a postcard please … (or later)
The final two top seeds are put into groups, with Manchester City going into Group G and Barcelona in Group H.
Now time for Pot 2 …
Two more Pot 1 teams are drawn, with Dutch champs Feyenoord going into Group E; Paris Saint-Germain are in Group F.
Napoli for Group C. Benfica are in Group D.
Sevilla are in Group B. Europa League winners but not a powerhouse of Pot 1, really.
First team out of the bucket is Bayern Munich. Group A for them.
Giorgio has talked us through the draw, we’ve had another couple of montages and we’re now ready for names out of the proverbial hat.
Very much this.
An email and a link. Paul Roche is killing time.
Who doesn’t like some late 70s synth pop to pass the time during these turgid draws Dominic.
Someone needs to fix Joe Cole’s mic. He says he wants ‘favourable draws for all the English teams’ apparently. No Chelsea or West Ham in there, though, Joe.
Now here come the Uefa drawmasters, led by usual suspect Giorgio Marchetti.
Eric Abidal and Joe Cole are this evening’s special guests and thus are called onto the stage to help conduct the draw. Both have ties to the final location, Wembley, with Cole a Londoner and Abidal having lifted the Champions League at Wembley in 2011 when Barça
beat smashed Manchester United.
The suits await in their masses packed inside the Grimaldi Forum as Pedro and Reshim go through their preamble. Time for a dramatic montage of last year’s Champions League on the screens.
Pedro Pinto and Reshmin Chowdhury are now presenting live coverage of the draw. The Uefa approved build-up fluff has officially begun.
All the pots are all based on Uefa coefficient rankings, with league winners and/or major European trophy holders in Pot 1.
Pot 1: Manchester City, Sevilla, Barcelona, Napoli, Bayern Munich, Paris Saint-Germain, Benfica, Feyenoord.
Pot 2: Real Madrid, Manchester United, Inter, Borussia Dortmund, Atlético Madrid, RB Leipzig, Porto, Arsenal.
Pot 3: Shakhtar Donetsk, RB Salzburg, Milan, Braga, PSV, Lazio, Crvena zvezda, Copenhagen.
Pot 4: Young Boys, Real Sociedad, Galatasaray, Celtic, Newcastle , Union Berlin , Antwerp, Lens.
Turn this up loud to get you in the mood.
Today’s Football Daily is out and about, with focus on Rangers’ abject failure to qualify for this Big Cup draw. PSV pulverised them to earn the right to finish third in any given group.
An email from Krishna as we prepare for that 5pm ‘start time’:
Good evening Dominic. 10 years ago Barcelona was the team to avoid. Then it evolved into a tournament where 32 teams compete and Real Madrid wins. Will the recent run by the English clubs sway the momentum in the favour of the Premier League?
Good question. I would suggest substituting Premier League with Manchester City and you’d be close.
Three things before we get into the nuts and bolts of things:
The first is obvious; that 5pm BST start is a pipe dream. These draws never, ever start on time, so there’s that.
It’s also worth restating that, as well as the Pots 1, 2, 3 and 4 dictating today’s draw, no team can be drawn in the same group as another side from their own association.
Also, the Uefa men’s and women’s players and coaches of the year will be presented during today’s ceremony in Monaco, as well as the Uefa President’s Award, which is going to Miroslav Klose.
Here’s Nick Ames’ scene-setter from Monte Carlo, as a maelstrom of controversy surrounds Uefa with the Luis Rubiales saga showing little sign of relenting.
Hello and welcome to our coverage of today’s Champions League group stage draw. There’s plenty of subtext today’s event beyond the usual intrigue: not least how it’s been overshadowed by the current scandal engulfing one of Uefa’s vice-presidents, Luis Rubiales who faces calls to resign after the Women’s World Cup controversy; then there’s the plain fact that this will be the final Champions League group stage draw in this format – it’s expanding to 36 teams in one big group from 2024 onwards. With the final qualifiers having been decided earlier in the week, we’re all set for the grand ceremony in Monte Carlo from 5pm BST.