Champions League group stage draw: Pot 1

All you need to know about the eight teams in Pot 1 ahead of Thursday's group stage draw.

©UEFA.com

Barcelona (ESP)

UEFA coefficient ranking (end of 2018/19): 2
How they qualified: Spanish champions
Best European Cup performance: winners (five times, most recently 2014/15)

What to expect: Goals. Antoine Griezmann has joined Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez to form one of the most lethal attacking triumvirates in Europe. Saying that, Ernesto Valverde's Barça are a more circumspect side than some of their recent predecessors; expect caution when required.

Bayern (GER)

UEFA coefficient ranking (end of 2018/19): 3
How they qualified: German champions
Best European Cup performance: winners (five times, most recently 2012/13)

Bayern's European Cup successes
Bayern's European Cup successes

What to expect: An attacking spectacle. Philippe Coutinho's arrival made it clear that Bayern's mission is to drive forward this season, the new boy joining Kingsley Coman, Serge Gnabry and Ivan Perišić in feeding Robert Lewandowski from out wide. If all goes to plan, Bayern will fear absolutely no one.

Juventus (ITA)

UEFA coefficient ranking (end of 2018/19): 5
How they qualified: Italian champions
Best European Cup performance: winners (twice, most recently 1995/96)

What to expect: Sarriball, presumably. There were only glimpses of Maurizio Sarri's eponymous style of play during his 12 months at Chelsea, but do not expect him to veer far from the ideals of high pressing, fast-paced possession football and building out from the back that he demonstrated at Napoli.

Manchester City (ENG)

UEFA coefficient ranking (end of 2018/19): 6
How they qualified: English champions
Best European Cup performance: semi-finals (2015/16)

Manchester City are Premier League champions
Manchester City are Premier League champions©Getty Images

What to expect: Plenty of the ball. Josep Guardiola's team continue to raise the bar domestically – they averaged 64% possession in last season's Premier League – and have added physicality to their defensive game with the acquisition of Rodri from Atlético. They will want to go deep into this season's competition.

Paris (FRA)

UEFA coefficient ranking (end of 2018/19): 8
How they qualified: French champions
Best European Cup performance: semi-finals (1994/95)

What to expect: After three consecutive round of 16 exits, the French heavyweights are yearning to at least match their tournament best – a semi-final in 1994/95. Thomas Tuchel has made no major signings, banking on Ander Herrera and Pablo Sarabia to supply Kylian Mbappé and Edinson Cavani.

Liverpool (ENG)

UEFA coefficient ranking (end of 2018/19): 11
How they qualified: UEFA Champions League winners
Best European Cup performance: winners (six times, most recently 2018/19)

Watch Liverpool's six European titles
Watch Liverpool's six European titles

What to expect: More of the same. Marshalled by imperious centre-back Virgil van Dijk, the Reds combined their high-octane attacking game with superbly disciplined defence to win a sixth European Cup (and finish second in the Premier League) last term. They should be no less vibrant.

Chelsea (ENG)

UEFA coefficient ranking (end of 2018/19): 12
How they qualified: UEFA Europa League winners
Best European Cup performance: winners (2011/12)

What to expect: Chelsea struggled to forge an identity during Sarri's sole season in the dugout, yet still came third in the Premier League. Club great Frank Lampard is now at the helm, following a promising debut campaign as a manager with Derby. Anticipate more faith in youth, 4-3-3 and some stylish suits.

Zenit (RUS)

UEFA coefficient ranking (end of 2018/19): 19
How they qualified: Russian champions
Best European Cup performance: round of 16 (three times, most recently 2015/16)

What to expect: A bright return. After three seasons in the UEFA Europa League group stage, Zenit have been missing the UEFA Champions League badly. Having kept their key players this summer, while strengthening in every department, the St Petersburg outfit intend to prove they are still a force in Europe.

Top