Who could Manchester United face in the Champions League? Real Madrid and Juventus both possible opponents

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Pot luck

Pots will be finalised this week but United are second seed after winning the Europa League last season

MANCHESTER UNITED are ready to return to the big stage in the Champions League this year.

Jose Mourinho masterminded a Europa League triumph last season to place United back among the giants of world football.

Rex Features

Manchester United qualified for the Champions League by winning the Europa League

Jose Mourinho celebrates with the Europa League after beating Ajax

Rex Features

Jose Mourinho celebrates with the Europa League after beating Ajax

And the Portuguese will find out his fate on Thursday, August 24 at 5pm when the group stage draw takes place.

As a second-seed team, United could face one of Europe’s powerhouses as early as the group stage.


Follow the Champions League draw in full on TalkSPORT 2


The full draw will be finalised after matches on Tuesday and Wednesday, with Liverpool and Celtic among the teams who will learn their fate.

Here’s everything you need to know about United’s Champions League group.

WHO CAN MANCHESTER UNITED NOT FACE?

Manchester United are in seeding pot 2 after qualifying through the Europa League.

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As a result, they cannot face: Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain, Borussia Dortmund, Manchester City, Porto or Napoli.

It is also impossible for teams of the same domestic league to meet in the group stage, so United will not face any of Chelsea (pot 1), Tottenham (pot 2 or 3, depending on results) or Liverpool if they qualify.

Manchester United cannot face Chelsea as they play in the Premier League together

AFP or Licensors

Manchester United cannot face Chelsea as they play in the Premier League together

WHO CAN MANCHESTER UNITED FACE?

Despite being unable to play the likes of Barcelona and PSG, there are still a number of top teams United could face.

United, and all the other teams from pot 2, face one side from each of the remaining pots.

And teams from pot 1 – made up of league winners from the top seven nations (based on Uefa country coefficients) – pose the biggest threat.

United could face holders Real Madrid, Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich or last year’s finalists Juventus.

Also in pot 1 are Benfica, Monaco, Spartak Moscow and Shaktar Donetsk.

From pot 3, United could face Basel, Anderlecht, Roma or Besiktas – who are the only teams confirmed so far.

Feyenoord are confirmed to be in either pot 3 or 4 so can face United.

German upstarts RB Leipzig will be in pot 4.

Manchester United could face holders Real Madrid in the Champions League group stage

Getty Images – Getty

Manchester United could face holders Real Madrid in the Champions League group stage

Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich are also a possible opponent for Manchester United

EPA

Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich are also a possible opponent for Manchester United

WHO ELSE CAN STILL QUALIFY?

Liverpool take a 2-1 lead against Hoffenheim to Anfield tomorrow night and will be placed in pot 3 if they win on aggregate.

Celtic are on the brink of qualification after a crushing 5-0 win over Kazakh side Astana and could face United.

Greek champions Olympiacos and Spanish side Sevilla are both favourites to go through after winning their first-leg ties 2-1 each over Rijeka and Istanbul Basaksehir.

Sporting Lisbon drew 0-0 with Steaua Bucharest in the first leg, but are at home in midweek.

CSKA Moscow lead Young Boys 1-0, but play away, while Israeli side Hapoel Beer Sheva are leading Maribor 2-1.

APOEL Nicosia are leading Slavia Prague, while Azerbaijan champions Qarabag will be hoping to shock FC Copenhagen at home.

The Horsemen beat the Danish champions 1-0 in the first leg.


How Will Man United resolve their defensive crisis in their Champions League opener



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