With the draw for this season’s Champions League having been made in Monaco, the countdown to the leading club competition in world soccer has well and truly begun. Highlights of the group stages include encounters between PSG and Real Madrid and Barcelona and Borussia Dortmund, however all eight groups are set to provide excitement and skill in equal measure.
Many of Europe’s biggest names will be hoping to emulate the achievements of English side Liverpool last season, with the 2020 final set to take place in Istanbul. With the action getting underway on September 17th, let’s take a closer look at which teams have been drawn together.
How are the 19/20 Champions League Group Stage groups?
- Group A: Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid, Club Brugge, Galatasaray
- Group B: Bayern München, Tottenham Hotspur, Olympiacos, Crvena zvezda
- Group C: Manchester City, Shakhtar Donetsk, Dinamo Zagreb, Atalanta
- Group D: Juventus, Atlético Madrid, Bayer Leverkusen, Lokomotiv Moskva
- Group E: Liverpool, Napoli, Salzburg, Genk
- Group F: Barcelona, Borussia Dortmund, Internazionale Milano, Slavia Praha
- Group G: Zenit, Benfica, Lyon, RB Leipzig
- Group H: Chelsea, Ajax, Valencia, LOSC Lille
Reigning champions Liverpool will take on Italian side Napoli as they look to once again make it through to the latter stages of the competition, while Group A pits together Real Madrid and PSG, two of the biggest names in European soccer today. Elsewhere, 2019 finalists Tottenham Hotspur will be looking forward to two fixtures against German champions Bayern Munich, while Premier League winners Manchester City have been handed a favourable draw alongside Shakhtar Donetsk, Dinamo Zagreb and Atalanta.
19/20 Champions League Schedule
|Group Stage:||17th September – 11th December 2019|
|Round of 16:||18th February – 18th March 2020|
|Quarter Finals:||7th April – 15th April 2020|
|Semi Finals:||28th April – 6th May 2020|
|Final:||30th May 2020g24|
Who are the 19/20 Champions League Favourites?
The Champions League is a competition that is difficult to predict, with last season’s tournament having perfectly demonstrated the fact that matches can be decided by the finest of margins and within the final seconds. However, the following teams are likely to be confident of reaching the latter stages of the competition this season.
Liverpool have become one of the most dangerous teams in Europe under manager Jurgen Klopp, while the fact that they are hugely difficult to beat on home soil also making them one of the favourites once again. The attacking trio of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane is enough to cause any defence issues, while defender Virgil van Dijk was recently named as the UEFA player of the year.
5x European champions Barcelona will be looking to put their devastating semi-final defeat against Liverpool from last season behind them, with Lionel Messi set to once again lead the Spanish giants in their quest for the Champions League title. Known for their passing style of play, Barcelona have added a number of new players over recent months, including French attacker Antoine Griezmann and UEFA midfielder of the year Frenkie de Jong.
Having dominated the English game over recent years, Manchester City will be hoping to finally make an impact upon the European stage this season, with manager Pep Guardiola having already won the competition with former club Barcelona. The likes of Sergio Aguero and Raheem Sterling have found the back of the net on a regular basis for the Citizens over the last 12 months, with many predicting that the Citizens will finally reach the last four this season.
Italian champions Juventus are undoubtedly one of the strongest teams in the competition this year, with their strength in depth ensuring that they have the ability to overcome any opponent on their day. Cristiano Ronaldo will be looking to lead the Old Lady to their first Champions League triumph since back in 1996, with former Napoli manager Maurizio Sarri now being at the helm in Turin.
Having been dramatically knocked out by Manchester United last season, PSG will be hoping to make up for such a defeat when they take on Real Madrid, Club Brugge and Galatasaray in Group A. With Brazilian superstar Neymar Jr having ultimately stayed at the club, despite significant interest from former club Barcelona, the attacking options in which PSG hold could well make them a threat this season.
19/20 Champions League Winners Odds
Which are the 19/20 Champions League Best Players?
While the Champions League is a competition that sees the very best players competing against each other, the following are perhaps the standout names to look out for over the coming months.
Messi has helped Barcelona in winning four Champions League titles during his career, with Argentine attacker being widely regarded as one of the finest players to have ever played the game. With over 500 career goals to his name, Messi still has the ability to take the game away from an opponent in the blink of an eye, meaning that Barcelona can never be written off when he is on the field.
Ronaldo has starred for Manchester United and Real Madrid in the past, with the Portuguese superstar now helping Italian giants Juventus with his goalscoring ability. Now well into his 30’s, Ronaldo is still one of the fittest players around, with the attacker having scored six goals in last season’s Champions League.
Mbappe became the world’s most expensive teenager when he signed for PSG from Monaco in 2018, with the French flyer having quickly become one of the most feared attackers in the game. Mbappe scored four goals and recorded five assists for the French champions during the 18/19 Champions League campaign, with the youngster only set to go from strength to strength.
Virgil van Dijk
Having arrived at Liverpool for £75 million in 2018, van Dijk has taken his game to another level, helping the English side to their Champions League success in Madrid back in June. The towering Dutchman is hugely difficult to beat, while he also has the skill to start many attacks for Jurgen Klopp’s side.
Champions League Recent Winners
- 2012 – Chelsea
- 2013 – Bayern Munich
- 2014 – Real Madrid
- 2015 – Barcelona
- 2016 – Real Madrid
- 2017 – Real Madrid
- 2018 – Real Madrid
- 2019 – Liverpool
Which are the 19/20 Champions League Popular Betting Markets?
A huge number of bets are placed on the Champions League each year, with the following being among the most popular markets offered by leading online bookmakers.
Champions League Top Goalscorer
Betting on which player will score the greatest number of goals during the tournament is always a popular market for punters, with Lionel Messi having scored 12 times during the 18/19 competition to claim the prize. The following players are among the favourites this time around:
- Lionel Messi @ 5.00
- Cristiano Ronaldo @ 6.00
- Mohamed Salah @ 11.00
- Raheem Sterling @13.00
- Sergio Aguero @ 13.00
- Robert Lewandowski @15.00
- Kylian Mbappe @ 15.00
- Harry Kane @ 21.00
- Sadio Mane @ 21.00
- Antoine Griezmann @ 26.00
- Neymar Jr @ 26.00
Champiosn League Nationality of Winner
Over recent years, clubs based in England, Spain, Italy and Germany have dominated the Champions League, meaning that betting on the nationality of the winner this season could well be a market worth taking advantage of. The following nationalities are among the leading candidates for punters to consider:
- England @ 2.50
- Spain @ 3.40
- Italy @ 7.50
- Germany @ 8.00
- France @ 9.00
- Netherlands @ 51.00
- Portugal @ 67.00