Champions League draw

Image: Champions League: Eyes on the prize

Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham and Rangers now know who they will face in the UEFA Champions League group stage.

British quintet discover opponents for European quest

Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea, Tottenham and Rangers now know who they will face in the UEFA Champions League group stage. Thursday's draw in Monaco has thrown up some intriguing ties, with the best sides on the continent all set to slug it out in pursuit of European football's most prestigious prize. Manchester United, finalists in two of the last three years, have been drawn into Group C where they will face a Battle of Britain encounter against SPL champions Rangers, a tough test against Spanish giants Valencia and Turkish debutants Bursaspor. Chelsea, who are looking to take the crown for the first time in their history, are set to face French title holders Marseille in Group F, while they will also make the long trip to owner Roman Abramovich's homeland of Russia to face Spartak Moscow and to Slovakia to take on MSK Zilina. The draw was relatively kind to Arsene Wenger's Arsenal, as they were placed alongside Ukrainian outfit Shakhtar Donetsk, Celtic's qualifier conquerors Braga and FK Partizan in Group H. Tottenham's Champions League bow pits them against reigning European champions Inter Milan, which will have whet the appetite in North London, while they will also take on Werder Bremen and FC Twente as they seek to secure a safe passage through Group A.


Jose Mourinho, who landed the prize with Inter Milan last season, will be hoping to help Real Madrid return to the top of the pile, but must make his way past AC Milan, Ajax (who have taken the trophy on 11 occasions between them) and Auxerre if he is to do so. Barcelona, the pre-tournament favourites, will fancy their chances of topping Group D, having been drawn alongside Panathinaikos, FC Copenhagen and Rubin Kazan, for the second year in a row. Four-time winners Bayern Munich will be looking to go one better than last year, when they came unstuck in the final, and will face Italian side Roma, Swiss outfit FC Basel and Romanian minnows CFR Cluj in Group E. Lyon made it all the way to the semi-finals last season and will have high hopes of reaching the knockout stages once again as they prepare to tackle Benfica, Schalke and Hapoel Tel-Aviv in Group B. The first round of matches in the group stage will take place on 14th and 15th September, as 32 sides set out on a road they hope will lead all the way to the final at Wembley on 28th May, 2011. To relive all the major talking points from the draw, take a second look at's Champions League debate by clicking here.

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