Paris will have to scrap, Marseille can dream. At the end of the draw for the 2022/2023 Champions League groups, the two French clubs experienced varying fortunes. Protected by its seeded status, PSG could hope for better. Christophe Galtier’s men, who remain big favorites in Group H, will have to face the beefy Juventus Turin, the attractive Benfica Lisbon and Maccabi Haifa.
OM was frankly spared by Yaya Touré and Hamit Altintop. He inherited the less scary top seed, Eintracht Frankfurt, from Tottenham and Sporting Portugal. Dimitri Payet’s teammates narrowly avoided the group of death made up of Bayern Munich, FC Barcelona, Inter Milan and poor Viktoria Plzen who must be wondering how he can get out of it…
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Dimitri Payet’s teammates narrowly avoided the group of death made up of Bayern Munich, FC Barcelona, Inter Milan and poor Viktoria Plzen who must be wondering how he can get out of it… In the other groups, defending champions Real Madrid are doing the best with a group made up of Leipzig, Shakhtar Donetsk and Celtic Glasgow. Present in hat 2, Liverpool inherited a group that was well within reach with Ajax Amsterdam, Naples and Rangers.
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Paris facing its demons
To reach the round of 16, Paris will have to face its old demons with Juventus Turin. The club of Adrien Rabiot and Angel Di Maria, who will be happy to play a dirty trick on their old team, have never lost against Paris (6 wins, 2 draws). The Italians even inflicted the biggest defeat on PSG in the European Cup in the first leg of the UEFA Super Cup in 1996 (1-6, 3-1 in the second leg).
The two clubs have not played each other since. Maccabi Haifa inflicted one of its greatest humiliations on PSG in the round of 16 of the 1999 Coupe des Coupes. The Parisians also remain on a defeat in 2013 in Lisbon in the group stage (after a victory in the to go, 3-0). But, in recent years, PSG has changed a lot and its painful memories will weigh less heavily with the artillery that Paris now has.
PSG – Juventus in 1996
OM can still believe in it
The individualities are less scintillating in Marseille and the affair will certainly be tough, but OM at least have the right to believe in it after the draw on Thursday. His group, which does not contain any former C1 winners, is very homogeneous even if Antonio Conte’s Tottenham, finalist in 2019, are slightly favorites.
Winner of the last Europa League, Eintracht Frankfurt of Kevin Trapp, Mario Götze and Randal Kolo Muani has not played the competition for more than 60 years and a final in 1960 lost against Real Madrid. Sporting completes the cast and offers Marseille the opportunity to erase the trauma of its last two Champions League campaigns (a single victory in twelve matches).
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