All you need to know about the Champions League draw

Ruben Holloway
August 30, 2018

The Champions League draw starts at 7pm United Kingdom time on Thursday, with Liverpool now knowing their pot.

Victory for Benfica in their play-off tie with PAOK Salonika - confirmed by last night's 4-1 second leg rout in Greece - secured the Portuguese side a place in Pot 2 and ended Liverpool's hopes of moving up into the second tier of seeds.

Manchester City share a pot with Champions League and Europa League winners, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid.

In a matter of hours, Inter will learn their Champions League group stage fate as the draw is made in Montecarlo, Monaco this afternoon.

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Last season the former Liverpool man scored 23 goals in 46 games across all competitions as City won the Premier League title with a record 100 points and Los Blancos have been enticed by his development under manager Pep Guardiola.

Real Madrid have reignited their interest in signing Manchester City's Raheem Sterling, according to Sky Sports.

The teams are split into four seeding pots. In pot three, Liverpool are most definitely the team to avoid. Valencia have made eye-catching signings including Goncalo Guedes from PSG and Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi - they will be unsafe.

The worst outcome, arguably, on paper for Liverpool would be to draw Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and Inter Milan in their group.

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But who else is in the competition, and what pots are they in?

Sterling has made 98 appearances for the league champions, scoring 32 goals.

An example of a weaker group could be: Lokomotiv, Porto, PSV and Club Brugge.

The draw for the pool phase begins at 6pm Irish time at the Grimaldi Forum (live on RTÉ News Now and RTÉ Player), with the ceremony also seeing the winners of the UEFA Player Awards being announced.

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