These are FC Bayern's possible CL group stage opponents
In just under two weeks, the 31st edition of Europe's most prestigious club competition gets underway - that's when the UEFA Champions League kicks off for the 2022/23 season. Due to the World Cup in Qatar at the end of the year, the group stage will be played at record speed this term: from the first (6/7 September) to the last matchday (1-2 November), there are just 57 days. Reigning German champions, FC Bayern are, of course, in the running for the trophy. Who the men from Munich will face in the group stage will be decided on Thursday, 25 August. All eyes in the football world will be on Istanbul, where UEFA will stage the draw from 18:00 CEST. fcbayern.com takes a look at the teams the six-time winners of the competition might come up against.
Bayern seeded so head their group
As always, the 32 participants have been divided into four pots. FC Bayern are seeded in pot one. This means they'll avoid clashes with defending champions Real Madrid or other champions of a top European league such as Manchester City from England, France's Paris Saint-Germain or AC Milan from Italy. The same applies, of course, to matches with the other German teams in the competition - thanks to Eintracht Frankfurt's Europa League triumph, this campaign sees five German clubs represented in the competition for the first time.
A host of top-class teams in pot two
However, the Munich side could still come up against some big names from pot two. In addition to last year's finalists Liverpool, five-time winners FC Barcelona as well as the Italian record champions Juventus are also in there.
Follow the draw (in English) alongside board member for sport Hasan Salihamidžić:
In pot three, previous winners Inter Milan are possible opponents. Then there are exciting teams like Salzburg, Napoli and Benfica. The supposedly easier opponents are in pot four, but with the likes of Marseille and last season's Europa League finalists Glasgow Rangers represented, there are also some illustrious names in the mix.
But no matter who the Bavarians are drawn against, the goal is clear: Julian Nagelsmann and his team are aiming to get through the group stage to keep the dream of reaching the final on 10 June 2023 in Istanbul's Atatürk Olympic Stadium alive.
The pots at a glance:
Pot 1 (will be avoided):
Real Madrid, Eintracht Frankfurt, Manchester City, FC Bayern, AC Milan, Paris Saint-Germain, Porto, Ajax
Liverpool, Chelsea, Barcelona, Juventus, Atlético Madrid, Sevilla, RB Leipzig (not possible), Tottenham Hotspur
Borussia Dortmund (not possible), Salzburg, Shakhtar Donetsk, Inter Milan, Napoli, Sporting Lisbon, Bayer 04 Leverkusen (not possible), Benfica
Club Brugge, Glasgow Celtic, Marseille, Viktoria Plzen, Maccabi Haifa, Glasgow Rangers, Copenhagen, Dinamo Zagreb
Group stage match dates:
Matchday 1: 6/7 September
Matchday 2: 13/14 September
Matchday 3: 4/5 October
Matchday 4: 11/12 October
Matchday 5: 25/26 October
Matchday 6: 1/2 November
One player who is destined to shine in this year's Champions League competition is FC Bayern starlet Jamal Musiala: