Matt Le Tissier provides his verdict on the Champions League draw, backing four Premier League sides to make the final 16.
The Southampton legend expects Chelsea, Manchester City, Liverpool and Manchester United to come through their groups after they all avoided the favourites.
Tottenham were placed in the same group as Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund and Le Tiss gives them a 40 per cent chance of progressing, but believes if Celtic progress having been drawn alongside Bayern Munich and PSG, it would be a greater upset than Leicester winning the 2015/16 Premier League.
Here is his verdict on each side’s draw and how their odds have changed…
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE DRAW ROUND-UP
Group A: Benfica, Manchester United, Basel, CSKA Moscow
Group B: Bayern Munich, Paris Saint-Germain, Anderlecht, Celtic
Group C: Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, Roma, Qarabag
Group D: Juventus, Barcelona, Olympiakos, Sporting
Group E: Spartak Moscow, Sevilla, Liverpool, Maribor
Group F: Shakhtar Donetsk, Manchester City, Napoli, Feyenoord
Group G: Monaco, Porto, Besiktas, RB Leipzig
Group H: Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, Tottenham, Apoel
Manchester United (were 14/1, now 11/1 with Sky Bet)
That’s as about good as could be expect from the pot they were in. Although the last time they were drawn in the same group with Basel and Benfica I remember them failing to get out of the group, having drawn and lost to Basel. It’s a terrific group, but the only downside is that when they do go through they’ll be playing a very big team. They won’t be able to play the runner up in their group or any of the English sides.
Manchester City (still 12/1 with Sky Bet)
Their group is probably just as favourable as United’s. It’s a decent group from their pot and there was plenty of massive teams that they could have got, and Shakhtar certainly are not in the same bracket. Can a Manchester club win the competition this year though? I still think the Premier League sides are a long way behind the favourites and I’d be surprised if a Premier League side won it.
Chelsea (were 14/1, now 16/1 with Sky Bet)
It’s quite a tough group considering they’ve been placed in pot one, especially with the teams coming out of pot two and three. Roma will provide a good test but I’d still back them to come through it, but it might be a tight one and it could go to the last game.
Liverpool (were 25/1, now 20/1 with Sky Bet)
Contenders to get out of the group? Yes. To win it? No. I would probably guess that the quarter-finals would be their limit and would represent success. When you consider they came out of the same pot as Tottenham, it’s certainly a good draw. Just getting to this stage is a huge boost for them and should help them attract players before the window closes, but everything I hear from Southampton is that we’re holding firm on Virgil van Dijk.
Tottenham (were 33/1, now 40/1 with Sky Bet)
What chance do I give them? I would say they’ve probably got about 40 per cent chance of getting out of that group. They’re a good team and capable of beating anybody on their day and, if they get their act together there, you wouldn’t put it past them beating Real Madrid at home. I’d just favour Dortmund, marginally, but if they were playing at White Hart Lane I’d make it a 50/50.
Celtic (still 500/1 with Sky Bet)
Would I described their draw as impossible? With PSG and Bayern Munich, probably, yes. I reckon if Celtic get out of that group then it’s a bigger surprise than Leicester winning the Premier League. However, the Europa is probably their more realistic aim and they should have a chance against Anderlecht.