2021-22 CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Chelsea, City, Bayern or Inter - Madrid's possibles rivals in next season's Champions League

Real Madrid will be in Pot 2 in the group stage draw as runners-up in LaLiga and will be drawn against one of the top-seeded clubs.

El delantero Karim Benzema presiona a César Azpilicueta en el Real Madrid-Chelsea de ida de las semifinales de la UEFA Champions League 2020-2021.
JESUS ALVAREZ ORIHUELA DIARIO AS

Next season's Champions League is starting to take shapes as nearly all of Europe's league competitions have been concluded. Real Madrid, who finished second in LaLiga, will go into Pot 2 - despite being second in UEFA's ranking, and could be drawn against some of the favourites such as Manchester City, Bayern Munich, Inter Milan or newly-crowned champions Chelsea. Obviously, clubs from the same country cannot land in the same group so Madrid won't face Atlético, Barcelona or Villarreal in the group stage.

Since 2015, the winners of the previous season's Champions League and Europa League along with the six clubs with the best ranking according to UEFA's club coefficients will go into Pot 1. That pushes Madrid out of Pot 1 even though they have the second highest coefficient. It means that they will avoid clubs such as Juventus, PSG, Liverpool, Manchester United and Dortmund. But in the champions pot, they could be drawn against Bayern, Manchester City, Chelsea, Inter Milan, Sporting Clube de Portugal or Lille.

Bombos del sorteo de la fase de grupos de la Champions 2021-2022

Pot 1 (Heads of  series) Pot 2
Chelsea Champions League winners Real Madrid ESP 127,000
Villarreal Europa League winners Barcelona ESP 122,000
Bayern GER 134,000 Juventus ITA 120,000
Man. City ENG 125,000 PSG FRA 113,000
Atlético ESP 115,000 Man. United ENG 112,000
Inter ITA 53,000 Liverpool ENG 101,000
Sporting POR 45,500 Sevilla ESP 98,000
Lille FRA 14,000 Dortmund GER 90,000
Pot 3 Pot 4
Porto POR 87,000 Milan ITA 31,000
Ajax NED 82,500 Wolfsburg GER 14,714
Leipzig GER 66,000
Atalanta ITA 50,500
Zenit RUS 50,000

Also directly qualified for the group stage are: Besiktas, Dinamo Kiev and Brugges.

Chelsea's victory over City in last night's final also changes the clubs' positions in the pots. It means that now Madrid will avoid Dortmund, who initially started off in Pot 3 but dependent on the result in the Champions League final and whether Manchester United would win the Europa League final - those results have effectively freed up a place for the Bundesliga side in Pot 2. 

In Pot 3, Real Madrid's possible rivals include Porto, Ajax, Leipzig, Atalanta or Zenit. Either Shakhtar Donetsk, Salzburg and Benfica will land in that pot depending on which one of them gets through the preliminary rounds. If one of the three are eliminated, Besiktas will go into Pot 3. Along with the Turkish side, Dinamo Kiev and Club Brugge (who will go into pots 3 or 4) are potential rivals, as are Wolfsburg and AC Milan in Pot 4. The Rossoneri go into the last pot after having played in the Europa League in the last three seasons (it's been seven years since they last qualified for the Champions League) and for not having progressed past the Last 16. As things are, the draw could put Real Madrid in a group of death with Milan and one of the top sides who are heads of series...