Wednesday, October 7, 2015

UEFA Champions League gets going

Thomas Muzekari
Staff Writer

The UEFA Champions League is underway as FC Barcelona looks to defend its crown from last season.  Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, Chelsea, and Manchester City are among the favorites to win the UEFA Champions League this season. Games are being broadcasted on ESPN Networks and Fox Sports.
 Group A is headed by two quality European clubs, Paris Saint Germain and Real Madrid. Manchester United looks to regain success in the Champions League as they headline group B. Atletico Madrid looks to continue its recent success as it tries to withstand its opponents in Group C. Meanwhile, in Group D, Juventus tries to take its first step in its effort to return to the final where they lost to Barcelona last year. Manchester City can make a deep run out of this group. Barcelona looks to stay red hot in the Champions League as they will try to defend its title, first starting off in an effort to win Group E. In Group F, German club Bayern Munich will look to get back to the final, and English club Arsenal will search for success that it has not recently had in the Champions League. Last year’s champion of the Barclays Premier League, Chelsea will look to carry its success over as they headline group G. Finally, in group H, Lyon searches for success as the club makes its return to the Champions League.
 The traditional setup is in play. There are eight groups of four teams. Each team will play the three other teams in its group twice.

 The two top teams in each group will advance to the knockout stage. Once in the knockout stage, for each round, matchups will be drawn randomly based on the teams that remain. Away goals is the tie breaker that will decide when teams draw against each other. If aggregate and away goals are equal for both teams, the teams will go into extra time. If it is still tied after extra time, there will be a penalty kick shootout. Each team will play its opponent twice, like in the group stage. This will be the case until the final, when there will be one match to determine the victor of the Champions League.

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