Have soccer threads made the permanent move from "Sports that aren't...." to "Football"?
Are there enough people here who care about the Champions League to make this thread worthwhile?
Will so many people express excitement about it that lotjx will tell us why it's bound to suck?
Let's find out!
GROUP A Inter Milan Werder Bremen Tottenham Hotspur FC Twente
GROUP B Lyon Benfica Schalke Hapoel Tel Aviv
GROUP C Manchester United Valencia Rangers Bursapor
GROUP D FC Barcelona Panathanaikos FC Copenhagen Rubin Kazan
GROUP E Bayern Munich AS Roma FC Basel CFR Cluj
GROUP F Chelsea Marseille Spartak Moscow MSK Zilna
GROUP G AC Milan Real Madrid Ajax Auxerre
GROUP H Arsenal Shakhtar Donetsk SC Braga FK Partisan
Well, my team (Rangers) are kinda fucked as far as getting in the top two goes, but hopefully Bursapor will be sufficiently sucky that we can get 3rd and drop into the Europa.
Group G is filled with nostalgic awesomeness, though it saddens my heart that Ajax just aren't able to compete with the leading teams in Europe like they could back when I was a lad.
Barca could put out their junior team and still walk their group. I don't see Rubin Kazan upsetting them two years running somehow.
Of the lower seeds, Schalke and Spartak probably stand the best chance of qualification. Spurs could spring an upset too, and Inter might find getting out of that group tougher than they'd like because Werder Bremen don't exactly suck.
Oh, and if one of the moderator types could hunt out the CL thread icon that would be appreciated. Apparently I'm too blind/stupid to see it. Cheers.
I think Groups A and B are the most interesting and agree with your sentiments about Group G. I certainly wouldn't cry any tears if Inter are relegated to the Europa League. Tottenham and Bremen are fun to watch, so I'd rather see them advance to the knockout stage.
I can't wait for the games to begin; I love me some Champion's League.
Forget Barca, Arsenal got the luck of the draw. That should let them rest some of their senior team during the group stages. My pick for them to win the Prmiership is looking better and better.
Rangers aren't fucked at all. Remember, Valencia got decimated in the off-season, and even United is not the United of 3 years ago (well, I guess they are, just 3 years older and minus their best player).
Originally posted by MoeGatesRangers aren't fucked at all. Remember, Valencia got decimated in the off-season, and even United is not the United of 3 years ago (well, I guess they are, just 3 years older and minus their best player).
I wish I shared your optimism, but I base my theory of our fucked-ness more on how dreadful we are than the state of the other teams.
We've only been able to spend money on two players in the last two and a half years, and one of those (Jelavic) can't play in the Champions League because Rapid Vienna beat Villa last night so he's cup tied.
Rangers, and Scottish football in general, are in a very sorry state right now. It's not the toughest group they could've had but if they finish 3rd I'd still be delighted.
Here's a "how they got there" breakdown of each group.
FC Internazionale Milano (ITA): Won 2009-10 Champions League and 2009-10 Serie A
SV Werder Bremen (GER): 3rd in 2009-10 Bundesliga beat Sampdoria (ITA) 5-4 agg in non-Champions play-off round
Tottenham Hotspur FC (ENG): 4th in 2009-10 Premier League beat Young Boys (SUI) 6-3 agg in non-Champions play-off round
FC Twente (NED): Won 2009-10 Eredivisie
Olympique Lyonnais (FRA): 2nd in 2009-10 Ligue 1
SL Benfica (POR): Won 2009-10 Portuguese Liga
FC Schalke 04 (GER): 2nd in 2009-10 Bundesliga
Hapoel Tel Aviv FC (ISR): Won 2009-10 Israeli Premier League beat Zeljeznicar (BIH) 6-0 in second qualifying round beat Aktobe (KAZ) 3-2 agg in third qualifying round beat Red Bull Salzburg (AUT) 4-3 agg in Champions playoff round
Manchester United FC (ENG): 2nd in 2009-10 Premier League
Rangers FC (SCO): Won 2009-10 Scottish Premier League
Valencia CF (ESP): 3rd in 2009-10 La Liga
Bursaspor (TUR): Won 2009-10 Super Lig
FC Barcelona (ESP): Won 2009-10 La Liga
Panathinaikos FC (GRE): Won 2009-10 Greek Super League
FC Copenhagen (DEN): Won 2009-10 Danish Superliga beat BATE (BLR) 3-2 in third qualifying round beat Rosenborg (NOR) on away goals in Champions playoff round
FC Rubin Kazan (RUS): Won 2009 Russian Premier League
FC Bayern Munich (GER): Won 2009-10 Bundesliga
AS Roma (ITA): 2nd in 2009-10 Serie A
FC Basel (SUI): Won 2009-10 Swiss Super League beat beat Debrecen (HUN) 5-1 in third qualifying round beat Sheriff Tiraspol (MDA) 4-0 agg in Champions play-off round
CFR 1907 Cluj (ROM): Won 2009-10 Liga I
Chelsea FC (ENG): Won 2009-10 Premier League
Olympique de Marseille (FRA): Won 2009-10 Ligue 1
FC Spartak Moscow (RUS): 2nd in 2009 Russian Premier League
MSK Zilina (SVK): Won 2009-10 Slovak Superliga Top Division beat Birkirkara (MLT) 3-1 agg in second qualifying round beat Litex Lovech (BUL) 4-2 agg in third qualifying round beat Sparta Prague (CZE) 3-0 agg in Champions play-off round
AC Milan (ITA): 3rd in 2009-10 Serie A
Real Madrid CF (ESP): 2nd in 2009-10 La Liga
AFC Ajax (NED): 2nd in 2009-10 Eredivisie beat PAOK (GRE) on away goals in third qualifying round beat Dynamo Kyiv (UKR) 3-2 agg in non-Champions play-off round
AJ Auxerre (FRA): 3rd in 2009-10 Ligue 1 beat Zenit St. Petersburg 2-1 agg in non-Champions play-off round
Arsenal FC (ENG): 3rd in 2009-10 Premier League
FC Shakhtar Donetsk (UKR): Won 2009-10 Ukranian Premier League
SC Braga (POR): 2nd in 2009-10 Portuguese Liga beat Celtic (SCO) 4-2 agg in third qualifying round beat Sevilla (ESP) 5-3 agg in non-Champions play-off round
FK Partizan (SRB): Won 2009-10 Serbian SuperLiga beat Pyunik (ARM) 4-1 agg in second qualifying round beat HJK Helsinki (FIN) 5-1 agg in third qualifying round beat Anderlecht (BEL) on penalties in Champions play-off round
Holy fuck shit motherfucker shit. Read comics. Fuck shit shit fuck shit I sold out when I did my job. Fuck fuck fuck shit fuck. Sorry had to do it....
Revenge of the Sith = one thumb up from me. Fuck shit. I want to tittie fuck your ass. -- The Guinness. to Cerebus
Another great clutch display from the Irishman. Hard to believe that this was a guy who, a few years ago, was known for always coming in second and never closing in the deal in any tournaments, let alone in majors.