The best 32 sides in Europe would battle it out for glory in the 28th edition of the biggest club footballing competition.
For the next nine months, football-loving fans will once again witness games full of anxiety and heartbreaking moments.
26 of the 32 slots for this season’s tournament were decided by league positions last season, with leagues having differing number of automatic qualifications spots based on the strength of their nation’s coefficients, while the remaining six slots were decided after a series of backbreaking qualifiers that started in July.
Let’s look at some wonder-kids to watch out for in this year’s champion’s league as well as some additions and omissions of some players with the performances of the clubs last season going into the league.
We kick off with teams in the English Premier League.
English Premier League clubs were phenomenal in the 2018/2019 Champions League campaign, with Manchester City, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspurs making it to the quarter-finals of the elite competition.
With Chelsea currently banned from bringing in new players, Lampard would have to rely heavily on Tammy Abraham and fellow youngsters Mason Mount and Fikayo Tomori as Chelsea plays against Spanish powerhouse, Valencia.
Tammy had a hat trick for the blues last weekend against wolves.
The 21 year old has 7 goals so far in the English premier league. at the age of 21 years and 347 days, he became the youngest player to score three goals in a match for the club in the Premier League era.
In Spain, Los Blancos suffered a shocking loss to Ajax in the last 16 of the elite competition last season and, no doubt, they are eager to make amend for the unsuccessful campaign.
Real Madrid this season have effected some positive changes by bringing on board Belgian superstar Eden Hazard to Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, but the big-money signing has yet to make his champions league debut for the Los Blancos.
Barcelona, on the other hand, are seen as favorites to lift the Champions League trophy as French ace Antoine Griezmann signed for the Catalans at a fee of €120 million.
The team gave out former Liverpool star, Philippe Coutinho to the Bavarians, Bayern Munich.
After generating headlines around the world after making a stunning step up onto a senior stage at Camp Nou and scoring two goals out of three games, Barcelona’s Ansu Fati will be a subject for discussion as the youngest ever Barcelona player to play in the Champions League should he feature in tomorrow’s game against Borussia Dortmund do so at 16 years and 351 days old.
The Blaugrana academy product played his first LaLiga Santander game against Real Betis and scored his first goal at Osasuna.
Atletico de Madrid splashed €126 million on 19-year-old Portugal rising star and wonderkid Joao Felix, who seems to be the perfect successor to Antoine Griezmann.
To make things even better for Atletico fans, the likes of Marcos Llorente (Real Madrid), Mario Hermoso (Espanyol), Kieran Trippier (Tottenham), Renan Lodi (Athletico-PR) and Felipe (Porto) joining the capital club as well.
He has scored one goal in 3 games for the Los Colchoneros(the mattress makers)
In Germany, Bayern Munich owners were not too active in the summer transfer window, but they did well to sign a loan deal with Barcelona star Philippe Coutinho.
The mighty Bavarians said goodbye to veterans Arjen Robben and Frank Ribery and seeing that their squad is undergoing rebuilding process, Niko Kovac’s men have slim chances of winning the 2019/2020 Champions League trophy.
In France, Paris Saint-Germain managed to keep hold of Neymar in the summer and brought the likes of Keylor Navas, Mauro Icardi , Pablo Sarabia , Idrissa Gueye, and Abdou Diallo.
In Italy, Juventus will once again fight for the trophy after they were kicked out by Ajax Amsterdam in last year’s competition. star man Cristiano Ronaldo and Gianluigi Buffon are still with the old ladies as a new manager, Mauricio Sarri will be at the helm of affairs.
Inter Milan at the other hand will also want to leave an indelible mark putting Antonio Conte to steer the Affairs of the team.
The competition proper would kick off today September 17, with the group stages lasting through December where the top two would qualify for the knockout rounds.
Written by: James Paa Kweku Eshun|universnewsroom.com