Paris Saint-Germain will face familiar foe Angel Di Maria when they take on Juventus in the UEFA Champions League group stage, while Marseille will take on Antonio Conte’s Tottenham Hotspur in an evenly balanced group.
PSG – who again start among the favourites to win a trophy that has continued to escape them since the Qatari takeover of more than a decade ago – were paired against their former Argentinian ace Di Maria in Thursday’s draw in Istanbul.
The Parisians will also face Benfica and Israeli champions Maccabi Haifa in Group H.
Marseille, the other French club in the competition, were drawn against last season’s Europa League winners Eintracht Frankfurt in Group D, along with Conte’s Spurs and Sporting Lisbon.
This season’s group stage will begin with the first round of games on September 6 and 7.
All six matchdays will be played in the space of nine weeks, finishing on November 1 and 2, with UEFA needing to complete the group stage before the World Cup begins on November 20.
Bayern to face Lewandowski
In the draw’s highlights, Bayern Munich were paired with Robert Lewandowski’s Barcelona, while Erling Haaland will face his former club as Manchester City were drawn against Borussia Dortmund.
Bayern and Barcelona will also come up against Inter Milan in Group C, which is completed by the Czech champions Viktoria Plzen.
Bayern beat Barcelona 8-2 in a one-off quarter-final in Lisbon in 2020, while the Catalans also lost 3-0 twice to the Germans last season as they were eliminated in the group stage.
Lewandowski, 34, signed for Barcelona during the close season for a fee that could reach 50 million euros ($49.9m) after scoring 344 goals in eight years at Bayern.
Haaland left Dortmund for Premier League champions City in the close season. Those sides will also face Sevilla and Danish champions FC Copenhagen in Group G.
Chelsea vs AC Milan
Elsewhere, last season’s beaten finalists Liverpool will play Ajax, Napoli and Rangers in Group A, while reigning champions Real Madrid will face Celtic as well as RB Leipzig and Shakhtar Donetsk in Group F.
Chelsea, winners in 2021, will take on Serie A champions AC Milan as well as Red Bull Salzburg and Dinamo Zagreb in Group E.
Finally, Porto and Atletico Madrid meet for the second season running in Group B, which also featured Bayer Leverkusen and Belgian champions Club Brugge.
(FRANCE 24 with AFP)