Champions League draw: Manchester City vs Paris, Atletico Madrid, Liverpool, Milan in the group of death
On August 27, the draw ceremony for the 2021-2022 UEFA Champions League group stage and the 2021 UEFA Awards ceremony took place in Istanbul, Turkey. After the results of the draw were revealed, it can be said that the enemies are reunited: Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain met and were placed together in Group A; Atletico Madrid and Liverpool were placed in Group B, forming a group of death with AC Milan; Inter Milan, Real Madrid and Shakhtar Donetsk Miners, who met in the group stage last season, were placed together again and were arranged in Group D; Bayern Munich and Barcelona were placed in Group E; last season's participation in the UEFA Cup final Two teams, Villarreal and Manchester United, were placed in Group F. With the addition of Atalanta, this group also has the air of a group of death.
The complete groupings for the 2021-22 UEFA Champions League season are as follows.
Group A: Manchester City, Paris Saint-Germain, Red Bull Leipzig, Brugge (Belgium)
Group B: Atletico Madrid, Liverpool, Porto, AC Milan
Group C: Sporting Portugal, Borussia Dortmund, Ajax, Besiktas (Turkey)
Group D: Inter Milan, Real Madrid, Donetsk Miners, Sheriff Tiraspol (Moldova)
Group E: Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Benfica, Dynamo Kyiv (Ukraine)
Group F: Villarreal, Manchester United, Atalanta, Young Bern (Switzerland)
Group G: Lille, Sevilla, Red Bull Salzburg, Wolfsburg
Group H: Chelsea, Juventus, Zenit, Malmo (Sweden)
Ivanovic and Essien, who helped Chelsea win the 2011-2012 UEFA Champions League, were present as guests of the draw. After the introduction of the Champions League group stage draw rules, Ivanovic completed the grouping of seeded teams; Ivanovic and Essien jointly completed the grouping of second-tier teams, third-tier teams and fourth-tier teams.
In the group stage of the 2021-2022 UEFA Champions League, a total of 32 teams participated, including 26 direct qualifiers and 6 teams that qualified for the main round through the qualifying round. For the first time in the history of Moldovan soccer, Tiraspol Sheriff started from the first qualifying round and eliminated three teams in a row to become one of the six teams to qualify through the qualifying round.
This year's tournament, La Liga has a total of five teams qualified, namely Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Sevilla and Villarreal, of which the Yellow Submarine is as last season's UEFA Cup champion to obtain the Champions League group stage qualification, and become the first-ranked team. The English Premier League, the German Bundesliga and the Italian Serie A each have four teams qualified for the tournament; due to Monaco's exit from the qualifying round, only Lille and Paris Saint-Germain remain in Ligue 1 to participate in this tournament, but the Portuguese Super League, which is ranked behind Ligue 1 by UEFA, has three teams participating, namely Sporting Portugal, Porto and Benfica; in addition, the Ukrainian league also has two teams participating in this tournament; the Netherlands, Russia, Austria The Netherlands, Russia, Austria, Belgium, Turkey, Switzerland, Sweden and Moldova each have one team in the tournament.
According to the Champions League group stage draw rules, the defending Champions League champions, the defending UEFA Cup champions and the top six league champions in the UEFA's coefficient rankings were seeded: Chelsea (Champions League champions), Villarreal (UEFA Cup champions), Manchester City (English Premier League champions), Atletico Madrid (La Liga champions), Bayern Munich (Bundesliga champions), Inter Milan (Serie A champions), Lille (Ligue 1 champions) ) and Sporting de Portugal (Portuguese Super League champions).
The second, third, and fourth ranked teams are ranked according to the last five seasons of European competition points, with a total of 8 teams in each rank. Because of this rule restriction, the second tier teams are all top giants, such as Real Madrid, Barcelona, Liverpool, Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus and Manchester United. The famous teams in the third grade include Porto, Ajax, Red Bull Leipzig, Atalanta, etc.; the famous teams in the fourth grade include AC Milan and Wolfsburg, etc. Judging from the distribution of teams in the last two grades, there is destined to be a group of death.
This season's Champions League group stage draw is the same as the previous season, 32 teams are divided into 8 groups, 4 teams in each group, consisting of 4 different grades; the draw process, the same league teams have the principle of avoidance, will not be divided into a group, the team from Russia and the team from Ukraine will not meet; in addition, there are some teams need to avoid the half zone, A-D is the top half, E-H is A-D is the top half, E-H is the bottom half, and the half-area avoidance are the same league teams, respectively, Manchester City-Chelsea, Atletico Madrid-Sevilla, Juventus-Inter Milan, Bayern Munich-Dortmund, Lille-Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid-Barcelona, Manchester United-Liverpool, Porto-Benfica, Shakhtar Donetsk-Dinamo Kiev, Red Bull Leipzig-Wolfsburg, Atalanta-AC Milan.
The first round of the 2021-2022 UEFA Champions League group stage will be played on September 15/16, the second to the sixth round of matches on September 29/30, October 20/21, November 3/4, November 24/25, December 8/9. After six rounds of competition, the second place team will be qualified for the Champions League knockout stage, and the third place team will be relegated to the UEFA Cup knockout playoffs. The draw for the Champions League round of 16 will be held on December 13, the first round of the 1/8 final will be held on February 16/17 and 23/24 next year, and the second round will be held on March 9/10 and 16/17; the draw for the Champions League round of eight and semi-finals will be held on March 18 next year, the first round of the quarter-finals will be held on April 5/6, and the second round will be held on April 12/13; the first round of the semi-finals will be held on April 12/13. The first round of the semi-finals will be held on April 27/28 and the second round on May 4/5; the Champions League final will be held on May 29 next year at the Krestovsky Stadium in St. Petersburg, Russia.