Barcelona players will discover which teams they will face in the group stages of the 2021-22 Champions League on Thursday, August 26 when the draw is made in Istanbul, Turkey.
The draw will take place at 6pm local time (1pm ET, 10am PT) and will be screened live on UEFA‘s official website. Thursday’s draw is starting to take shape with 26 of the 32 spots already confirmed.
All teams are divided into four pots with Pot 1 containing the defending champions, Chelsea, the Europa League winners, Villarreal, and the champions of England, Spain, Germany, Italy, Portugal, and France.
The remaining teams are seeded according to their UEFA coefficient. Barcelona is in Pot 2 which means they could be drawn in the same group as a top team such as Chelsea, Bayern, Manchester City, Inter, Sporting Lisbon or Lille. Teams from the same national association can not face either other in the group stages.
Here’s how the draw is looking so far:
Pot 1: Chelsea, Bayern Munich, Manchester City, Atletico Madrid, Villarreal, Inter Milan, Sporting Lisbon, Lille.
Pot 2: Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus, Manchester United, Paris Saint-Germain, Liverpool, Sevilla, Borussia Dortmund.
Pot 3: Porto, Ajax, Shakhtar Donetsk, RB Leipzig, RB Salzburg, Benfica, Atalanta, Zenit.
Pot 4: Besiktas, Dynamov Kiev, Sheriff Tiraspol, Club Brugge, Young Boys, AC Milan, Malmo, Wolfsburg.
The final round of qualifying fixtures for the group stage take place on Tuesday, August 24 and Wednesday, August 25 before the draw on Thursday.
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Champions League 2021-22 Schedule
Barcelona supporters do not have too much longer to wait to see their team back in Champions League action. The first round of group fixtures are scheduled for 14-15 September.
Here’s a look at the rest of the group-stage calendar:
Matchday 1: 14-15 September
Matchday 2: 28-29 September.
Matchday 3: 19-20 October
Matchday 4: 2-3 November
Matchday 5: 23-24 November.
Matchday 6: 7-8 December
The two top teams from each group progress to the knockout stages with the draw for the Round of 16 due to take place on December 16. The Last 16 is due to kick-off on 15-16 February, 2022, while the final is set for 28 May, 2022 at Russia’s Saint Petersburg Stadium.
Can Barcelona Make An Impact In Europe?
Barcelona and coach Ronald Koeman will be hoping to make an impact in Europe after struggling in recent seasons. The Catalan giants were knocked out in the last 16 by Paris Saint-Germain in 2020-21.
Meanwhile, previous campaigns have brought painful exits to Roma, Liverpool, and Bayern Munich with the club’s last success in the competition coming back in 2015. Koeman must also try to conquer Europe without the services of Lionel Messi this time around.
Messi’s departure for PSG means the Ligue 1 side are the early favorites to be crowned European champions for the first time in the club’s history.
Manager Mauricio Pochettino has a star-studded squad with players such as Sergio Ramos, Gianluigi Donnarumma, and Achraf Hakimi having also moved to Paris this summer to join the likes of Neymar and Kylian Mbappe at the Parc des Princes.
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