UEFA Champions League 2013/14 – Draw Results & Analysis

Thursday UEFA drew teams from 4 pots to determine the groups to kick off the Champions League tournament. The top 2 teams from each group will advance to the round of 16. The teams that finish in third place will join the Europa League tournament. No team from any league can meet a team from the same league in the group stage.

 

Here are the groups:

Group A

  • Manchester United FC
  • FC Shakhtar Donetsk
  • Bayer 04 Leverkusen
  • Real Sociedad de Fútbol

Group B

  • Real Madrid
  • Juventus
  • Galatasaray
  • FC København

Group C

  • SL Benfica
  • Paris Saint-Germain FC
  • Olympiacos FC
  • RSC Anderlecht

Group D

  • Bayern Munich
  • CSKA Moskva
  • Manchester City
  • Viktoria Plzen

Group E

  • Chelsea FC
  • FC Schalke 04
  • FC Basel 1983
  • FC Steaua Bucuresti

Group F

  • Arsenal FC
  • Olympique de Marsielles
  • Borussia Dortmund
  • SSC Napoli

Group G

  • FC Porto
  • Atlético Madrid
  • FC Zenit
  • Austria Wien

Group H

  • FC Barcelona
  • AC Milan
  • AFC Ajax
  • Celtic FC

Group of Death:

Every year they like to label one group as the “Group of Death” which is essentially the toughest group of them all. Their isn’t a clear cut winner like in last season. I would go with Group B and the trio of Real Madrid, Juventus and Galatasaray. Group H is certainly a interesting match up with Mario Balotelli leading AC Milan against Lionel Messia and Neymar of Barcelona. Ajax and Celtic aren’t as strong a third team as the Group B trio.

Interesting pairing:

Barcelona and Celtic are matched up again. If you’ll remember Celtic stunned Barcelona with a defeat behind the foot of a teenager, Tony Watt. Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund will be another interesting match of two top-tier clubs. The third match I’m excited to see is Bayern Munich and Manchester City in Group D.

Teams celebrating their draws:

Manchester United, Paris Saint-Germain, and Chelsea all have to be relieved to have dodged facing a top-tier opponent in the group stage. ManUtd’s toughest foe will be Shaktar Donetsk. Chelsea’s toughest foe will be the Bundesliga squad FC Schalke 04. PSG’s toughest foe in their group will be probably SL Benfica.

That being said, there are no easy opponents in the Champions League.

Cristiano Ronaldo is up for winning the UEFA Best Player on Thursday

The trophy will be awarded during the ceremony for the Champions League group stage draw

Tomorrow, On August 29th, the UEFA Best Player in Europe will be chosen in Monaco and the Champions League group state draw will take place. This will all happen in a ceremony where Cristiano Ronaldo will be one of the stars and which will begin at 18:00 hours. The Real Madrid player has been nominated, together Messi and Ribery for the individual award, which recognizes the best player of the 2012/2013 season in Europe.

32 teams will participate in the group stage draw, which will be divided into four different drums according to the UEFA’s coefficient system. At this stage, the teams will not be able to face other teams in their own countries. At the end of the draw there will be eight groups with four teams each.

As for the election to designate the UEFA Best Player in Europe, a group of expert journalists will choose the winner live through an electronic system. Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the finalists together with Messi and Ribery, and will be at the ceremony in Monaco. Besides his achievements at the national competitions, the Portuguese player was the top scorer in the past edition of the Champions League with 12 goals.

 

Ronaldo Wants ‘Manchester United Return’

Cristiano Ronaldo has informed Manchester United that he wants to return to Old Trafford one day probably next summer according to The Guardian’s Daniel Taylor.

It would not be a move that would be forced by Gareth Bale’s impending arrival at Real Madrid but because Ronaldo wants to finish off his playing career at the place where he became the player he is today.

Speaking about the possibility of a move, Taylor said: “Cristiano Ronaldo has informed Manchester United he would like to return to the club one day, probably to end his career, after a summer in which the Premier League champions have explored the possibilities behind the scenes of bringing him back from Real Madrid.”

Taylor goes on to say that a move for Ronaldo would not happen this summer and that he would pledge his immediate future to Madrid but that next year, a move may materialise.

If Ronaldo was to come back to Old Trafford next summer, he would be 29 – the same age as Robin van Persie when he joined – and would have at least a couple of years playing at his peak, so it would be fantastic for the club if we could make it happen.

Ronaldo knows how much he is loved by United fans, the cheer when his name was announced in the Champions League match at Old Trafford reminded him if he had forgot, and United would no doubt be willing to fork out financially but whether Madrid would be willing to let him go is another matter altogether.

Raul ‘grateful’ for Real Madrid tribute

Former Real Madrid striker Raul admits the Bernabeu Trophy match between his Qatari club Al-Sadd and the Spanish giants evoked memories of his Los Blancos debut against Atletico Madrid almost 20 years ago.

Real claimed a convincing 5-0 win in the match, which acted as a tribute to Madrid legend Raul, with the Spaniard scoring the first goal for Carlo Ancelotti’s side before playing the second half in Al-Sadd colours.

Raul donned the number 7 jersey he made famous at the Bernabeu for the first 45 minutes, before handing it back to Cristiano Ronaldo at half-time and the 36-year-old was moved by the reception he received.

There were a lot of small details in the match. Cristiano giving me his shirt, Casillas his armband… everyone has made me feel welcome,” Raul said. ”Thanks to the club, to the coaching staff that have made me feel like one of them.

”I had similar feelings in my debut against Atletico here in the Bernabeu. I enjoyed it, there was a lot of participation. That His Majesty was here was a big surprise and it is a source of pride that the King of Spain was here. I will be eternally grateful, it was very special.

”For many years I defended this shirt with all my heart and I felt all the affection and I feel indebted. I would not change anything that has happened and it has been shown that it was worth the wait and that it is my home.

”Everything comes around. The fans have enjoyed it and the Real Madrid faithful now have to be united to achieve the objectives. A new project is starting and I hope that fans come to support and that everyone gives 100%.”

Raul also reiterated his support of goalkeeper Iker Casillas, who continues to face stiff competition from Diego Lopez, while insisting the expected arrival of Gareth Bale will not reduce Cristiano Ronaldo‘s importance at Real.

”Iker is a great professional and team-mate and is experiencing something new, but with hard work and effort he will be back helping Real Madrid to achieve their objectives,” he added.

Cristiano is the present and future of Real Madrid, and I’m sure he’ll continue to be so. If the Bale thing doesn’t happen, I’ll cost much less.”

Real youngster Jese scored a brace in his side’s win and Raul has backed the winger to rise above the competition at the Bernabeu.

I give up my shirt to the future of the academy, although there are many more, they are going to push to move this thing forward,” he said. ”They have to put on pressure because there are no friendlies at Real Madrid. It is Jese’s first year and it will be tough, but he will certainly have opportunities and will do very well, like Morata, Nacho.” Fortsätt läsa Raul ‘grateful’ for Real Madrid tribute

Nike’s Mercurial CR7 ‘Galaxy’ Edition Football Boots

Nike‘s All New ‘Galaxy‘ Edition  Football Boots for Cristiano Ronaldo.

Jump on your spaceship racing to the speed of light with the new CR7 Vapor IX edition dubbed ‘Galaxy’! The boot is designed for the Nike headliner Cristiano Ronaldo and features a leather like upper combining a perfect balance between comfort and lightweight. This boot reveal comes after the unveiling of the Total Crimson CR7 edition.
The Galaxy edition Boots will be officially going to be revealed in September, this year.

The first of its kind, an alien to the football boot market it features a stunning star gazing, eye catching colourway on a leather like upper creating a unique incarnation to the Vapor speed range. The boot combines a black and blue colour which mimics suns and stardust with ‘martian mint green‘ laces and twin studs and a Nike Swoosh logo which looks similar to the shades and colours seen on our moon offering a colourway never seen before.

Thousands of boot enthusiasts will be counting down to take off as the boots will be officially released in September this year and this edition will be the third CR7 edition of the Vapor IX series and looks to as popular as ever! Boasting a super lightweight upper and soleplate with a twin stud configuration, this CR7 edition will sky rocket you into the far distant galaxy!

Get To Know More About All Ronaldo’s Boots Used Till Today