WINNERS & LOOSERSUEFA Champions League Draw: The Winners and Losers

The UEFA Champions League group stage draw for the 2023-2024 season has been unveiled, and while there may not be a standout “group of death,” there are intriguing matchups to anticipate. Group F, featuring Paris Saint-Germain, Borussia Dortmund, Milan, and Newcastle United, stands out as a highly competitive group that promises thrilling encounters. However, across the board, most teams could consider themselves fortunate with their draws, offering seemingly straightforward paths to the knockout phase. Here, we assess some of the winners and losers emerging from Thursday’s draw ceremony at Monaco’s Grimaldi Forum.

Full UEFA Champions League 23-24 groups

  • Group A: Bayern Munich, Manchester United, Copenhagen and Galatasaray.
  • Group B: Sevilla, Arsenal, PSV Eindhoven and Lens.
  • Group C: Napoli, Real Madrid, SC Braga and Union Berlin.
  • Group D: Benfica, Inter, Red Bull Salzburg and Real Sociedad.
  • Group E: Feyenoord, Atletico Madrid, Lazio and Celtic.
  • Group F: Paris Saint-Germain, Borussia Dortmund, Milan and Newcastle United.
  • Group G: Manchester City, RB Leipzig, Red Star Belgrade and Young Boys.
  • Group H: Barcelona, Porto, Shakhtar Donetsk and Antwerp.



  1. Real Madrid: Carlo Ancelotti and Real Madrid have faced a barrage of challenges in recent weeks, with injuries sidelining key players like Thibaut Courtois, Eder Militao, and Vinicius Junior. However, the Champions League group draw offers a glimmer of relief. Group C, featuring Napoli, poses its own challenges, but the inclusion of Braga and Union Berlin has eased the burden. Real Madrid now appears poised for a comfortable top-two finish in the group, providing a respite amid their recent setbacks.
  2. Barcelona: For Barcelona, the Champions League draw appears to be a dream scenario. Porto, Shakhtar, and Antwerp are unlikely to pose significant challenges, offering the Catalan giants a comparatively easy path. In contrast to the previous year, when they faced Bayern Munich and Inter, this draw feels like a stroll in the park and will likely be treated as such at Camp Nou.
  3. Manchester City: The reigning champions, Manchester City, have plenty to be pleased about in their Champions League group. Their primary concern is facing RB Leipzig for the third year in a row, following last season’s round of 16 encounter. Red Star Belgrade and Young Boys don’t appear to be formidable opponents, although away matches might pose a bit more challenge. Nevertheless, City’s overall quality should see them through, even in the unlikely event of a hiccup or two. They are well-positioned to advance as one of the top two teams in the group, given the considerable gap in quality.
  4. Arsenal: Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal has drawn a fairly favorable group in the UEFA Europa League, consisting of Sevilla, PSV, and Lens. The biggest challenge to the Gunners’ bid for top place likely comes from the reigning Europa League champions, Sevilla. While Arsenal is expected to secure a top-two finish, they should be cautious of potential stumbling blocks in away fixtures against PSV and Lens. Even if they drop a few points, Arsenal’s experience and pedigree in European competition give them a strong advantage in this group. They are the favorites to advance, despite having been away from this level for a few years.



  1. Paris Saint-Germain (PSG): Drawn into Group F alongside formidable opponents like Borussia Dortmund, Milan, and returnee, Newcastle United, PSG might appear to have a challenging route. Still, considering their star-studded lineup, they’re likely to relish the competition. The clash between PSG and Borussia Dortmund will be particularly electrifying, featuring some of the world’s top talents.
  2. Borussia Dortmund: Dortmund finds themselves in the same group as PSG, Milan, and Newcastle United. While it’s undoubtedly a tough group, the prospect of high-profile matchups against PSG and Milan will be enticing for fans. The battle between young talents and seasoned stars will be captivating.
  3. Manchester United: Drawn into Group A alongside Bayern Munich, Manchester United, Copenhagen and Galatasaray. Manchester United should feel optimistic about their chances of advancing. While Bayern Munich presents a challenge, United should still be able progress to the next stage.



  1. Newcastle United: Making their return to the Champions League after a long absence, Newcastle finds themselves in a challenging Group F with PSG, Borussia Dortmund, and Milan. The Magpies face an uphill battle to progress further, but their fans will relish the opportunity to see their team compete at this level.
  2. Antwerp: At first glance, Group H featuring Barcelona, Porto, Shakhtar Donetsk, and Antwerp may not appear overly challenging, except for Belgian debutants Antwerp. While the Portuguese and Ukrainian giants have seen better days, the same can be said for Barcelona. However, this won’t bring much comfort to Mark van Bommel’s Belgian champions. Achieving third place ahead of Shakhtar might be seen as Antwerp’s best-case scenario, but if they can make Bosuilstadion a formidable fortress, they could potentially challenge Porto, a team with ample continental experience. This group holds intrigue, especially for Antwerp, looking to make their mark on the European stage.
  3. Celtic: The Scottish giants, Celtic, find themselves facing a challenging group with Feyenoord, Atletico Madrid, and Lazio. All three teams are renowned for their formidable home grounds, making away fixtures daunting for Celtic. While Celtic’s own European away form has been less than stellar, their home advantage may not be as pronounced as that of Feyenoord, Atletico Madrid, or Lazio. Despite the challenges, Celtic will aim to hold their own and make a statement in a group that promises tough battles on the road.


While there may not be a group that immediately stands out as exceptionally tough, the Champions League always brings surprises, and fans can look forward to thrilling clashes as the tournament progresses. The stage is set for another season of European football’s most prestigious competition, and the world will be watching closely.


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