All eyes at Bayern on Thursday evening will be trained on Monaco, location for the 2012/13 Champions League group stage draw at the Grimaldi Forum, starting at 6 pm CET. Bayern once again rate among the top eight teams and will be drawn from pot one, meaning FCB cannot meet Barcelona, Manchester United, Real Madrid, Arsenal, Porto, AC Milan and holders Chelsea in the first stage.
However, and just like last year, Germany's biggest club could yet end up in a hugely challenging group, featuring for example Manchester City (pot two), Juventus (pot three) and Malaga (pot four). There are plenty of dangerous floaters as well, including Shakhtar Donetsk, Olympiakos Piraeus, Paris St Germain or Istanbul giants Galatasaray. On the other hand, Munich could face surprise French champions Montpellier, or top Danish outfit Nordsjaelland, both like Malaga debutants in Europe's elite club competition.
32 clubs, four pots
On Wednesday evening, Spartak Moscow, Dynamo Kyiv, CFR Cluj, Celtic and Lille claimed the last five places in the 2012/13 Champions League. The seedings and division into pots are determined according to UEFA coefficients based on performance over the last five seasons.
Each of the eight groups includes one team from each pot. Teams from the same country cannot be drawn together in a group, so Bayern will definitely not cross swords with Dortmund (pot three or four) and Schalke (pot two). The first group stage matchday is on 18 and 19 September, with the final at Wembley on 25 May 2013.
|Pot 1||Pot 2||Pot 3||Pot 4|
|Manchester United||Shakhtar Donetsk||Anderlecht||BATE Borisov|
|FC Bayern||Zenit St. Petersburg||Juventus||Dynamo Zagreb|
|Real Madrid||Schalke||Spartak Moscow||CFR Cluj|
|Arsenal||Manchester City||Paris Saint-Germain||Malaga|
|AC Milan||Dynamo Kyiv||Galatasaray||Nordsjaelland|