England’s best hope for this season’s Champions League.
European football returns this week, but which Premier League team do you think will progress the furthest in this season’s Champions League?
Currently top of the Premier league, it can be said that Jose Mourinho’s men are in the best form heading into Gameweek 1. The United boss won Europe’s elite competition with Porto in 2003/04 and Inter Milan in 2009/10, meaning the Red Devils will not be without experience in the year’s campaign. After following up last season’s Europa League win with the big-money signings of Romelu Lukaku and Nemanja Matic, United will certainly be considered dangerous in this year’s competition.
Pep Guardiola’s side sit in second behind their arch rivals in the Premier League. The Spanish tactician himself is no stranger to European success having won the Champions League with Barcelona in 2008/09 and 2010/11. City spent more than £200m in this summer’s transfer market, meaning anything less than the trophy would be considered a disappointment.
The Blues will looking to continue their rich vein of form with a win against Qarabag FK at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday. Antonio Conte won the Champions League as a player with Juventus in 1995/96, but is yet to get his hands on the coveted trophy as a manager. A summer revamp has seen Alvaro Morata, Tiemoue Bakayoko, Danny Drinkwater, Antonio Rudiger and Davide Zappacosta bolster the Chelsea squad, with all players expected to help Conte’s side challenge for a winners medal.
Liverpool have only participated in Europe’s elite competition once since the 2009/10 season and had to come through a tricky qualifying test against Hoffenheim. Jurgen Klopp has access to one of the most feared attacks in the Premier League, but will defensive frailties become evident when they come up against the best?
Spurs may have finished third and second in the Last two Premier League season’s respectively, but Mauricio Pochettino’s side have struggled to make an impact in the Champions League over the last few years. They also face the added challenge of playing at temporary home Wembley, a stadium they struggled at last year as they crashed out in the group stages. The face tough matchups against Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and APOEL, in a group that has been labelled this year’s ‘Group of Death’. Hugo Lloris is among the players who are wanting to see an improvement in this term’s competition, but do the North London club have enough firepower to compete with Europe’s best?