The route to next season’s UEFA Champions League group stage has been outlined, and teams are starting to have an idea of what their movement will be like in next season’s competition.
With Manchester City’s victory in the UEFA Champions League on Saturday against Inter Milan, the English side will be in Pot 1 for the 2023/2024 season, just as the UEFA Europa League champions Sevilla, who beat Roma to the title two weeks ago on penalties.
The seven-time Europa League champions will also be in pot one alongside La Liga champions FC Barcelona who will be seeded in Pot One despite getting knocked out of the UEFA Champions League last season in the group stage.
Italian champions Napoli also made it into Pot 1 just as Feyenoord benefited from Manchester City’s win and fell into Pot 1 alongside Bayern Munich and PSG.
However, 14-time winners Real Madrid are seeded in Pot 2 alongside city rivals Atletico Madrid and UEFA Champions League regulars FC Porto, Inter Milan Manchester United, RB Leipzig Dortmund, and Borussia Dortmund.
They are joined by returning Arsenal, who are returning to the UEFA Champions League since the 2015/2016 season. Another returning team, Real Sociedad, who are making their first Champions League appearance since 2014, will fall into Pot 3 or 4, the same as Newcastle United, who surprisingly made the top 4 in the Premier League last season, and Scottish champions Celtic.
Teams confirmed in Pot 3 include Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk, Italian clubs AC Milan and Lazio, including Serbian side Red Star Belgrade and FC Salzburg.
German club Union Berlin who are making their UEFA Champions League debut, will be in Pot 4 alongside French club RC Lens.
The draw for the group stage will be held on August 31, 2023, after the completion of the playoff rounds of the qualifiers. The 32 teams will be drawn into eight groups of four.
Daniel Ademiju Idowu