The 2020/21 UEFA Champions League is officially set. All the groups have been drawn and the tournament is ready to begin. It officially begins on the 20th of this month.
Four clubs are making their debuts in the tournament. For the first time in the tournament’s history, three Russian clubs are participating in the group stage. French club Olympique de Marseille is in the tournament for the first time since the 2013-14 edition. Italian club Lazio is in the tournament’s group stage for the first time the 2007-08 edition. Manchester United is back in the tournament after not participating in last year’s edition.
The 2020/21 Champions League group stage is set ⭐ pic.twitter.com/riZJhxwplB— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) October 1, 2020
Three Early Predictions
Prediction #1: Sevilla will be the tournament’s dark horse.
The Spanish club is in the tournament’s group stage for the first time since the 2017-18 edition. Los Palanganas won last season’s Europa League title. The six-time Europa League champions are the most successful club in Europa League history.
Los Palanganas are ready to take their momentum and skill to the next level. They’re looking to make an impact on the Champions League. The last time they were in the Champions League, Sevilla made it to the quarterfinals, eliminating Manchester United in the Round of 16. That means that they’ve been a dark horse in this tournament before. And they can certainly do it again.
Under the leadership of Julen Lopetegui, Sevilla seems capable of advancing to the tournament’s knockout stage. Los Palanganas may be on the verge of an era of success. In other words, it may just be the beginning for them.
Prediction #2: Manchester United will not make it out of the group stage.
Honestly, Manchester United is far from being a good team. There’s no doubt that the club has superb talent. However, the problem with the Red Devils is their mentality. They lack a winning mentality and that’s been a problem for years now.
The Red Devils are paired in Group H alongside Paris Saint-Germain, RB Leipzig, and Basaksehir. PSG and RB Leipzig both made impacts in last season’s tournament. Les Parisiens are obviously the odds-on favorite to win the group so the prime focus is on who will take second place and advance to the knockout stage along with PSG. RB Leipzig is realistically the favorite to finish second due to Manchester United’s current state and status.
The lack of a winning mentality has led to Manchester United lacking team chemistry. Without those two qualities, the Red Devils can’t make good on their expensive talent. Until those two issues are resolved, positive and convincing results are unlikely to happen. Therefore, Manchester United is honestly not good enough to advance to the Champions League’s knockout stage this season.
Prediction #3: Bayern Munich wins it all…again.
Bayern Munich won the Champions League last season in spectacular fashion. Leaving a path of absolute destruction in the knockout stage last year, Bayern Munich has proved a point to the world; they’re a very good club. Not only do they have the talent, but they’ve got a unique winning mentality and great team chemistry. In other words, they have got it all.
Although Bayern Munich recently suffered a 4-1 loss to Hoffenheim in Bundesliga play, which ended their 32-game unbeaten streak. Regardless, Bayern Munich is still tougher than a $2 steak. Some may say Bayern Munich is the best club in Europe but perhaps that can be a bit of an overstatement. However, within the last two weeks, Bayern Munich would win both the UEFA Super Cup, as well as the DFL-Supercup to make it a total of five titles wins in 2020. Quite frankly, that has to make Bayern Munich the best club in Europe.
In last season’s Champions League tournament, Bayern Munich went undefeated, becoming the first team to win it all with a 100 percent record. In addition, Bayern Munich’s scoring of 43 goals in last season’s tournament is a record.
There’s no team in the tournament that has a winning mentality and the focus that Bayern Munich has. That’s what makes them a heavy favorite aside from being the defending champions. 2020 has honestly been a good year for Bayern Munich and they’re looking to stay hot at all costs.
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