Difficult draw for City
Manchester City have been handed another tough Champions League draw as they face the champions of Spain, Germany and Holland.
Last Updated: 31/08/12 8:20am
Manchester City have been handed another tough UEFA Champions League draw as they face the champions of Spain, Germany and Holland.
The Premier League holders will face nine-time winners Real Madrid in Group D as well as four-time champions Ajax and German giants Borussia Dortmund.
All four teams won their national leagues last year and Roberto Mancini's mood is unlikely to be improved by the draw handed to rivals Manchester United.
The Red Devils will line up against Braga, Galatasaray and CFR Cluj in Group H but Sir Alex Ferguson will no doubt be wary after his side failed to successfully negotiate a similarly manageable draw last season.
Holders Chelsea take on Juventus, Shakhtar Donetsk and Nordsjaelland in the group stages as they aim to become the first team in the Champions League era to successfully defend the trophy.
Celtic, who are competing in the group stages of the tournament for the first time in four years, have a showpiece tie against favourites Barcelona to look forward to.
But Neil Lennon may hope to trouble the remaining two opponents in Group G, Benfica and Spartak Moscow.
Arsenal are in Group B with Schalke, last year's group opponents Olympiakos and newcomers Montpellier.
The Gunners will be optimistic following that draw, especially having acquired Montpellier's star striker Olivier Giroud in the summer.
The first group matches will be played on September 18 and the final of this year's tournament will be contested on May 25 at Wembley Stadium.