A prompt and to the point draw with Henrik Larsson and Eric Abidal on ball selection duty has established the 12 groups for the 48 participants in the 2017/18 Uefa Europa League group stage draw. The group stage action gets underway on September 14 and conclude on December 7.
LaLiga sides groups:
Group J: Athletic (ESP), Hertha (GER), Zorya (UKR), Östersund (SWE)
Group L: Zenit (RUS), Real Sociedad (ESP), Rosenborg (NOR), Vardar (MKD)
Group A: Villarreal (ESP), Maccabi (ISR), FK Astana (KAZ), Slavia Prague (CZ)
Europa League group stage draw: as it happened:
and the award concludes the draw. UEFA getting it just about right with the new draw procedure .... Thanks for your company and we'll be back on December 11th for the draw for the next round of the 2017/18 UEFA Europa League ....
...and the winner is Paul Pogba (Man. United)
That concludes the draw.... Stay wilth AS English for all post draw reaction and the confirmation of kick-off dates and fixtures. The 2016/17 UEFA Europa League Player of the season will now be confirmed....
Swiftly moning on to Pot 4: First team is ...Slavia Prague (group A), Skenderbeu (group B), Istanbul Basaksehir (group C), AEK (group D), FC Lugano (group G), Red Star Belgrade (group H), Apollon Limassol (group E), Konyaspor (group I) , FC Zlin (group F), Ostersunds (group J), Vitesse Arnhem (group K), Vardar (group L).
Pot 3: FC Astana (group A), Partizan Belgrade (group B), Hoffenheim (group C), Hapoel Beer-Sheva (group G), Rijeka (group D), Atalanta (group E), Cologne (group H), Vitoria Guimares (group I), Zoraya (group J), FC Sheriff (group F), Zulte (group K), Rosenberg (group L).
We now move onto pot 2: First side out is ....Macabbi Tel Aviv (group A), Young Boys (group B), Ludogorets (group C), Austria Vienna (group D), FCSB (formerly known as Steaua) group G, BATE (group H) , Olympique Marseille (group I), Hertha BSC (group J ), Nice (group K), Real Sociedad (group L), Everton (group E), Lokomotiv Moscow (group F)
Stay with us folks ... First teams in groups A-L will be shortly known.... First name out is Villarreal (group A), Dynamo Kiev (group B) , Braga (group C), AC Milan (group D), Lyon (Group E), FC Copenhagen (group F), Viktoria Plzen (group G), Arsenal (group H), FC Salzburg (group I), Athletic Club (Group J), Lazio (group K), Zenit (group L) .
So, preamble over.....draw time ....Pot 1 with the likes of Arsenal, Milan, Lazio and Villarreal first out
A recently shorn UEFA Director of Draws Giorgio Marchetti talks us through the draw process
Eric Abidal will also assist in the draw.
Henrik Larsson (an idol for the Celtic Park faithful) will be on hand to draw the balls this morning.
Big Euro house and foreign commentary over fine Europa League 16/17 season goals is our opener this morning...It has to be said that the draw for yesterday's Champions League draw was nicely paced, a cutback on the waffle and the who process lasting just over an hour .... Well played UEFA
Lighthearted and flamboyant presenter Darren Tullet is our MC this morning. That's how Wikipedia bill him anyway ; )
Here are the match-days for the 17/18 Europa League group stage games:
As always at this stage of the competition, no teams representing the same federation can face one another. For political reasons UEFA will also separate Russian and Ukrainian sides form playing each other
David Villa has been recalled to the Spanish national team squad .... the breaking news story of the morning as we count-down to the UEL draw.
All set for the draw at the Foro Grimaldi in Monaco... Real Sociedad, Villarreal and Athletic the LaLiga sides awaiting their fate this morning.
The #RoadtoLyon gets underway in earnest today with 48 sides aiming to be in the Lyon final on May 16th 2018.
As was the case with yesterday's #UCL draw, this morning's event will also see various player awards for last seasons Europa League competition..Best forward, goalkeeper etc.
29 nations represented across the 48 teams composing today's Europa League draw
The pre-tournament favourites for this year's title are Arsenal which, if it was to happen, would make it back to back Premier League team wins following Manchester United's victory last season. But as perennial Champions League residents, would that be satisfying enough for Arsenal fans?
It's Friday the 25th of August and thank you for joining us as we build up to the live draw in Monaco which will determine who meets who in the group stage of the Europa League 2017/18.