What to look out for on UEFA Champions League Matchday 1 Wednesday | UEFA Champions League

The UEFA Champions League continues on Wednesday with the first round of matches in Groups A to D.

We pick out some key talking points ahead of the second set of opening fixtures.

Pick your UCL Fantasy team!

September 6
Group E
: Dinamo Zagreb 1-0 Chelsea, Salzburg 1-1 AC Milan
Group F
: Celtic 0-3 Real Madrid, Leipzig 1-4 Shakhtar
Group G
: Sevilla 0-4 Man City, Dortmund 3-0 Copenhagen
Group H
: Paris 2-1 Juventus, Benfica 2-0 Maccabi Haifa

September 7
Group A
: Ajax vs Rangers, Napoli vs Liverpool
Group B
: Atlético vs Porto, Club Brugge vs Leverkusen
Group C
: Inter vs Bayern, Barcelona vs Plzeň
Group D: Frankfurt vs Sporting CP, Tottenham vs Marseille

Recall 2011 Bayern vs Inter thriller

What to look out for

Bayern at Inter for ‘group of death’ opener
Julian Nagelsmann was left in no doubt after the draw teed Bayern up for meetings with Inter, Barcelona and Plzeň in Group C: “For sure it is the most challenging group in the group stage,” asserted the Bundesliga champions’ coach. Even so, the 35-year-old believes his team can rise to meet any challenge, adding: “I think we can finish first.”

Bayern racked up 20 goals in the first four competitive games of their domestic season, new arrival Sadio Mané ensuring that Robert Lewandowski has not been missed too badly so far. Simone Inzaghi’s Inter will be no pushovers, though; second in Italy last season, they have Edin Džeko, Lautaro Martínez and Romelu Lukaku among their forward options.

Antonio Čolak’s Rangers winner at PSV

Rangers return after a long absence
UEFA Europa League runners-up last season, Rangers return to the UEFA Champions League group stage for the first time since 2010 and face a tough first assignment away to Ajax, who won all six group games in 2021/22. With Erik ten Hag having departed, however, this is a new-look Dutch side under new coach Alfred Schreuder, although five wins from five in this season’s Eredivisie with 16 goals scored and only three conceded suggests they remain formidable opponents.

“You have to keep hold of your way of playing,” said Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst, whose side won 1-0 at Ajax’s domestic rivals PSV Eindhoven in the play-off second leg, although the Scottish club came into this one having lost 4-0 to champions Celtic in the first Old Firm game of the season on Saturday. “You keep trusting your players and give them confidence because in the past we have bounced back from heavy defeats and that’s what we have to do again.”

When are the UEFA Champions League group stage games being played?

Matchday 1: 6/7 September 2022
Matchday 2: 13/14 September 2022
Matchday 3: 4/5 October 2022
Matchday 4: 11/12 October 2022
Matchday 5: 25/26 October 2022
Matchday 6: 1/2 November 2022

Lewandowski: Great Bayern goals

Further ahead
• The Group C ante will be ramped up on Tuesday of Matchday 2 as Robert Lewandowski returns to Bayern with his new club, Barcelona. Haaland’s City take on his old side, Dortmund, the following day.

• Anfield will be the place to be on Matchday 3 as Liverpool welcome Rangers for the first installment of their Group A double-header. Amazingly, the British duo have yet to meet in the UEFA competition.

• With Cristiano Ronaldo absent from the group stage, Lionel Messi has the chance to close the 15-goal gap on his long-term rival in the all-time top-scorer standings. Below them, Lewandowski and Karim Benzema start the 2022/23 campaign locked together on 86 goals apiece.

Where is the 2023 UEFA Champions League final being played?


The 2022/23 Champions League season will conclude at Istanbul’s Atatürk Olympic Stadium on June 10, 2023.

Built to support Turkey’s bid to stage the 2008 Olympic Games, the venue opened in 2002 and is home to the Turkish national team. Located in the Başakşehir area of ​​the city, west of the Bosphorus, it boasts a seated capacity of over 75,000.

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