Revealed! The best- and worst-case European draws for every British club
Changes to the format of the Champions League this year allowed the top four teams from England, Spain, Germany and Italy direct access to the group stage. With only six sides now battling through the qualifiers, the draw will have a slightly different feel this time around.
We’ve analysed the situation for the UK’s nine potential representatives across the Champions League and Europa League to determine the best- and worst-case scenarios as things stand...
As champions of England, City will avoid some of the tournament’s big dogs in Pot 1, where they’re joined by the likes of Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.
Potential landmines in Pot 2 include Borussia Dortmund, Napoli and last year’s semi-finalists Roma, while Monaco and Schalke are better avoided in Pot 3 and Inter or Galatasaray would make for tricky away trips as bottom seeds.
A path to the knockout rounds would appear to be clearest with difficult but winnable ties against Porto, CSKA Moscow and AEK Athens.
Best draw:Porto, CSKA Moscow, AEK Athens
Worst draw: Borussia Dortmund, Monaco, Inter
Manchester United and Tottenham
Both of these sides will be placed in Pot 2 and could therefore face one of the European giants; Russian champions Lokomotiv Moscow are without doubt the team to hope for from the top pool.
Should that happen, CSKA Moscow will be out of the picture as a potential Pot 3 opponent, so Ajax could be the next-best option. A trip to Switzerland would undoubtedly be more welcome than Milan or Istanbul.
Best-case scenario: Lokomotiv Moscow, Ajax, Young Boys
Worst-case scenario: Barcelona, Monaco, Inter
Last year’s runners-up now know that they'll be in Pot 3 after Benfica’s comprehensive 5-2 play-off win over PAOK on Wednesday night.
Best-case scenario: Lokomotiv Moscow, Porto, AEK Athens
Worst-case scenario: Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund, Inter
NEXT: All in for the Europa?