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Tag Archives: UEFA Champions League

UEFA Champions League Group Stage – Draw Results 2013-2014

FC Barcelona, AC Milan, AFC Ajax and Celtic FC in one group.

The draw for the Champions League Group Stage was concluded in Monaco today, and the 32 teams were spread over 8 groups based on a certain pot structure (details of the 4 pots here)

The final groups were fairly distributed and no group of death was made up. Some would say that Group H is the strongest as it has Barcelona and Milan – yes they will meet again for the 100th time in the past 3 years.

If you take a closer look at the groups, you will realize that the most interesting one to follow will be Group F with Arsenal spearheading it.

Here are the full details of the final groups – Games kickoff on 17 September 2013 and finish on 10 December 2013:

Group A
Manchester United FC (ENG)
FC Shakhtar Donetsk (UKR)
Bayer 04 Leverkusen (GER)
Real Sociedad de Fútbol (ESP)

Group B
Real Madrid CF (ESP)
Juventus (ITA)
Galatasaray AŞ (TUR)
FC København (DEN)

Group C
SL Benfica (POR)
Paris Saint-Germain FC (FRA)
Olympiacos FC (GRE)
RSC Anderlecht (BEL)

Group D
FC Bayern München (GER, holders)
PFC CSKA Moskva (RUS)
Manchester City FC (ENG)
FC Viktoria Plzeň (CZE)

Group E
Chelsea FC (ENG)
FC Schalke 04 (GER)
FC Basel 1893 (SUI)
FC Steaua Bucureşti (ROU)

Group F
Arsenal FC (ENG)
Olympique de Marseille (FRA)
Borussia Dortmund (GER)
SSC Napoli (ITA)

Group G
FC Porto (POR)
Club Atlético de Madrid (ESP)
FC Zenit (RUS)
FK Austria Wien (AUT)

Group H
FC Barcelona (ESP)
AC Milan (ITA)
AFC Ajax (NED)
Celtic FC (SCO)

Full list of UCL group stage fixtures

Full list of UCL group stage fixtures

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Hello Chelsea! Ready for “Manslaughter”?

Now that I got your attention, register the following: I love Chelsea to the extent I did not want them to overcome Benfica so they would not end up facing Barcelona. Obviously I am that pessimistic and obviously I am in no mood to listen to stuff like: Chelsea came back against Napoli and just qualified to the FA Cup final and blabla bla bla…..

Wake up people! This is not 2009. This is not Mourinho’s Chelsea. This is not Napoli. This is a game between a team that plays the best football in the world against a team that is led by a bunch of old soldiers.

Recent matches and team forms have shown that they are both ready for this game. Recent results have shown that Barcelona are stoppable if, and only if, there are 2 or 3 Nestas (plural of Nesta) in each team. However, with the likes of John Terry (who is way behind his best days), David Luiz (who doesn’t even know that he is a defender yet), and Mikel (who is Sir Alex Ferguson’s best unsigned player), Chelsea will not be able to stop Barcelona.

Now talking about what will actually happen:

  • Referees will sit on the sidelines because they need to enjoy the show, too.
  • Red cards will be shown; at least one to a player in Blue.
  • Di Matteo will be the first to rush and exchange his jacket with Xavi’s jersey.
  • Stamford Bridge fans will give a standing ovation for Messi’s goal; number four that is.
  • Roman Abramovich will sign blank cheques for Tello, Cuenca, Montoya, Sergi Roberto, and Fontas!
  • Guardiola will be upset when Pedro commits his 10th consecutive unnecessary dribble.
  • Busquets will not be given the chance to act as Drogba will dominate the show instead.

On a serious note, Chelsea can get away with murder in the first leg, but I see goal galore and a beautiful game to remember. If you are crazy enough and have loads of money, go ahead and bet for a Chelsea qualification to the final.

Chelsea vs Barcelona - Referees are not the limit

Chelsea vs Barcelona: Referees are not the limit.

Disclaimer: It has been long since I last unleashed such rants,
and since this is my blog I can do it whenever I want!

UEFA Champions League: Last 16 Matches Schedule

[CLICK Image to ENLARGE]

champions league last 16 matches schedule

UEFA Champions League Group Stage Draw (and my “whatsoever” revelations)

The hype is gone, the waiting is over, and Messi takes home another award. Tomorrow is just a new day and a new opportunity for the city of Barcelona to celebrate a new trophy that only FC Porto can deprive them of. The two teams meet at Stade Louis II for the UEFA Super Cup match (match will kickoff 18:45 GMT – 22:45 Dubai Time).

Lionel Messi with his UEFA Best Player in Europe Award after the draw

Lionel Messi is voted UEFA Best Player in Europe 2010/2011

The main football related event on Thursday night was the UEFA Champions League Group Stage Draw. The result of the draw may have upset some clubs, like poor BATE Borisov, and may have thrilled the fans because of the clash of FC Barcelona and AC Milan. For the details, and the full result of the draw, you can download the document here or visit the following link: UEFA Champions League Group Stage Draw.

Now let’s skip the formalities and jump into the analysis. It is not about predictions but expectations.

Group A: I really want to watch every single match in this group. It promises a lot of excitement and goals. From one side, Manchester City are all geared up with millions of dollars and big signings who dream of glory beside the exaggerated salaries. From the other side, Napoli are back on the European stage and they have no Maradona this time but a strong team. The obstacle facing both teams will be mighty Bayern. The Germans will host the final in May 2012 and they will not be the happiest of hosts if they were not part of the final game.

Group B: I read somewhere that even Gasperini cannot mess up Inter’s chances of qualifying from this group. It might not be the toughest of all groups but it surely is a mysterious one. Trabzonspor are participating with a wild card and things can turn into their favor, while Lille will be led with a “Hazard” in each game. It is not my favorite group but the two teams to finish top will be a good addition for the play-offs round.

Group C: No big expectations are set for this one. Sir Alex will have six opportunities to test as many youngsters as he wants before he decides on who can lead him all the way to Munich.

Group D: I don’t believe that Mourinho fears any déjà vu’s. Ajax or Lyon will only be the other two teams wearing white. My money is with Ajax to accompany Cristina and co. yet, I was never good with money.

Carles Puyol wore his finest pair of shorts to the CL draw‎

Carles Puyol wore his finest pair of shorts to the CL draw‎

Group E: Mata meets his ex-teammates. Mata hugs his ex-teammates. Mata and his ex-teammates proceed to the next round. Need more to say?

Group F: Monsieur Wenger is exotic. He gets an exotic group. It will be fun to watch this group’s matches if there are no other games airing at the same time.

Group G: I didn’t know there is “Group G”. Moving on…

Group H: This is everyone’s favorite because Barcelona meets Milan and then Milan meets Barcelona. But wait a second, what about the other two teams? Well, tough luck. It will be a great chance to see the reception prepared for Zlatan Ibrahimović at the Camp Nou. He had a big mouth last summer so he’d better be prepared to be the last samurai.

Zlatan Ibrahimović

The Last Samurai: Not your favorite Tom Cruise, though.

These are the seven groups, and you may believe they are eight groups instead if you counted Group G. The next few months will guarantee some quality European football encounters and the participants still have five more days to reinforce their squads. (you can read my advice to some of them here)

I will leave you now to your predictions and bets on who will top which group and who will make it to the next round. But before I do so, it is a must to mention that Lionel Messi, on the night of the draw, was selected UEFA Best Player in Europe 2010/2011. He came first ahead of Xavi and Cristina, who could not manage but grabbing Luis Figo’s “behind” (evidence below).

Cristiano Ronaldo trying to touch Luis Figo

Cristiano Ronaldo trying to touch Luis Figo in a really <insert description here> place


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