The 2023/24 UEFA Champions League group stage begins today, with some of the biggest clubs in the world, including Bayern Munich, Liverpool, and Real Madrid, all in action.
The Champions League is the most prestigious club competition in European football, and it is always a spectacle to watch. The group stage features 32 teams, which are divided into eight groups of four. Each team plays six matches in the group stage, three at home and three away. The top two teams from each group qualify for the knockout stage.
The group stage is always very competitive, and there are always a few surprises. Last season, for example, defending champions Real Madrid were eliminated in the quarter-finals by Chelsea.
This season, there are a number of teams who will be hoping to challenge for the title. Bayern Munich are the favorites, having won the Bundesliga title for the tenth consecutive season last year. Liverpool are also strong contenders, having reached the Champions League final in three of the last four seasons.
Other teams who will be hoping to make an impact include Real Madrid, Manchester City, Paris Saint-Germain, and Chelsea.
Here is a preview of some of the key matches on matchday one:
- Bayern Munich vs. Inter Milan: Bayern Munich will be hoping to get off to a winning start against Inter Milan, who they beat in the Champions League round of 16 last season.
- Liverpool vs. Ajax: Liverpool will be looking to avenge their defeat to Ajax in the Champions League group stage last season.
- Real Madrid vs. Eintracht Frankfurt: Real Madrid will be hoping to start their Champions League campaign strongly against Eintracht Frankfurt, who won the Europa League last season.
- Manchester City vs. Sevilla: Manchester City will be looking to continue their good form against Sevilla, who they beat in the Champions League round of 16 last season.
- Paris Saint-Germain vs. Juventus: Paris Saint-Germain will be hoping to make a statement against Juventus, who are one of the most successful clubs in European football.
The Champions League group stage is always a great opportunity to see the best teams in Europe compete against each other. With so many big clubs involved, there is sure to be plenty of excitement and drama.
Here are some additional thoughts on the upcoming Champions League group stage:
- The group of death this season is probably Group C, which features Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, Barcelona, and Viktoria Plzeň. All four of these teams are capable of winning the Champions League, and it will be interesting to see which two make it out of the group stage.
- Another interesting group to watch is Group D, which features Tottenham Hotspur, Sporting CP, Marseille, and Eintracht Frankfurt. Tottenham are the favorites to win the group, but Sporting CP, Marseille, and Eintracht Frankfurt are all capable of causing them problems.
- The Champions League is always unpredictable, and there are sure to be a few surprises this season. One team to watch is RB Leipzig, who have a very talented squad and are capable of beating anyone on their day.
- The Champions League is also a great opportunity for young players to make their name on the big stage. Some players to watch this season include Jude Bellingham (Borussia Dortmund), Pedri (Barcelona), and Jamal Musiala (Bayern Munich).