UEFA Champions League draw: Full list of groups announced for 2021 UCL group stage
The field of 32 teams for the UEFA Champions League 2021-2022 is established. All eyes now switch to the draw for the group stage in Istanbul, Turkey on Thursday, August. 26.
The 32 team names will be divided into four different pots and one name from each will be drawn to shape the eight Champions League groups. The only important caveat: No club can play against a team from their own country in the group stage.
Each team will play a total of six group stage matches with the top two teams from each group advancing to Round 16 of the Champions League in February 2022. The team that finishes in third place in each group is eliminated, but the consolation prize is that they will fall in the UEFA Europa League knockout phase to face one of the runners-up of the Europa League group stage.
How to watch the Champions League group stage draw
- Date: Thursday, Aug. 26
- Time: 12 p.m. ET
- TV Channel: CBS Sports Network (CBSSN)
- Stream: fuboTV, CBS Sports HQ, Paramount+, CBS Sports app
The 32 teams are divided into four pots containing eight teams each. One name of each pot will be drawn for each group A through Group H.
The UEFA Champions League group stage draw came to fruition with the high-profile head-to-head matches that fans wanted to see.
Group B is simply amazing, with four continental powerhouses: Atlético Madrid, Liverpool, Porto, and AC Milan, while tournament favorites Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain were reunited in Group A. Now all that remains is that Cristiano Ronaldo actually transferred to Manchester City as the rumors suggest. If he does, he would prepare a tasty showdown against Lionel Messi and Neymar from PSG. It is the Champions League trophy or the disaster for both clubs.
Bayern Munich (Germany) will face Barcelona (Spain) and Chelsea (England) will face Juventus (Italy) in the other striking clashes of the draw. Manchester United and Villarreal of Spain will also meet again in a rematch of the 2021 Europa League final.
Finally, in a highly unlikely scenario, Inter Milan (Italy), Real Madrid (Spain), and Shakhtar Donetsk (Ukraine) joined the same group for the second consecutive edition.
All group stage matches will be played in the six scheduled windows: September 14-15, September 28-29, October 19-20, November 2-3, November 23-24, and from December 7 to 8.
Champions League draw groups
Pot 1: Manchester City (England)
Pot 2: Paris Saint-Germain (France)
Pot 3: RB Leipzig (Germany)
Pot 4: Club Brugge (Belgium)
Pot 1: Atletico Madrid (Spain)
Pot 2: Liverpool (England)
Pot 3: Porto (Portugal)
Pot 4: AC Milan (Italy)
Pot 1: Sporting CP (Portugal)
Pot 2: Borussia Dortmund (Germany)
Pot 3: Ajax (Netherlands)
Pot 4: Besiktas (Turkey)
Pot 1: Inter Milan (Italy)
Pot 2: Real Madrid (Spain)
Pot 3: Shakhtar Donetsk (Ukraine)
Pot 4: Sheriff Tiraspol (Moldova)
Pot 1: Bayern Munich (Germany)
Pot 2: FC Barcelona (Spain)
Pot 3: Benfica (Portugal)
Pot 4: Dynamo Kiev (Ukraine)
Pot 1: Villarreal (Spain)
Pot 2: Manchester United (England)
Pot 3: Atalanta (Italy)
Pot 4: BSC Young Boys (Switzerland)
Pot 1: LOSC Lille (France)
Pot 2: Sevilla (Spain)
Pot 3: RB Salzburg (Austria)
Pot 4: VfL Wolfsburg (Germany)
Pot 1: Chelsea (England)
Pot 2: Juventus (Italy)
Pot 3: Zenit St. Petersburg (Russia)
Pot 4: Malmo FF (Sweden)
Team pots for group stage draw
The eight teams in Pot 1 are predetermined: The pot will consist of the Champions League champions (Chelsea), the Europa League champions (Villarreal CF) and the champions of the six best-ranked associations: Spain (Atletico Madrid), England (Manchester City), Germany (Bayern Munich), Italy (Inter Milan), France (Lille) and Portugal (Sporting CP).
- Bayern Munich (Germany) – 134
- Manchester City (England) – 125
- Atlético Madrid (Spain) – 115
- Chelsea (England) – 98
- Villarreal (Spain / UEFA Europa League holders) – 63
- Inter Milan (Italy) – 53
- Sporting CP (Portugal) – 45.5
- LOSC Lille (France) – 14
- Real Madrid (Spain) – 127
- FC Barcelona (Spain) – 122
- Juventus (Italy) – 120
- Manchester United (England) – 113
- Paris Saint-Germain (France) – 113
- Liverpool (England) – 101
- Sevilla (Spain) – 98
- Borussia Dortmund (Germany) – 90
- FC Porto (Portugal) – 87
- Ajax (Netherlands) – 82.5
- Shakhtar Donetsk (Ukraine) – 79
- RB Leipzig (Germany) – 66
- RB Salzburg (Austria) – 59
- Benfica (Portugal) – 58
- Atalanta (Italy) – 50.5
- Zenit St. Petersburg (Russia) – 50
- Besiktas (Turkey) – 49
- Dynamo Kiev (Ukraine) – 47
- Club Brugge (Belgium) – 35.5
- BSC Young Boys (Switzerland) – 35
- AC Milan (Italy) – 31
- Malmo FF (Sweden) – 18.5
- VfL Wolfsburg (Germany) – 14.5
- Sheriff Tiraspol (Moldova) – 14.5
Teams cannot be grouped against teams from their own country. On top of that, to maximize television audiences, UEFA goes a step further to ensure that teams from the same country are not drawn to groups playing the same day. Thus Barcelona and Real Madrid, for example, do not play at the same time, which would cannibalize the television audience in Spain, much less throughout the world.
This is how UEFA achieves this: The organizers have identified teams that want to ensure they play on separate days. If one of those teams is drawn in Groups A-D, then the other team has to be drawn in one of the Groups E-H, thus ensuring that the two teams never play on the same day. The same would be true if one of the marked teams is drawn in the E-H Groups (the other team would have to be drawn in one of the A-D Groups). These are the teams that UEFA announced will remain separate: