quote linkedin dugout

First Team News

Video 1 Gallery

Possible Champions League play-off round opponents

Sergio Aguero

Sergio Aguero

The 1-1 draw at Swansea has all-but mathematically assured City of the fourth Champions League spot, but taking the final berth means the Blues will have to play a qualifying round to reach the group stage of the competition.

City will enter the final phase of qualifying in a section called the League Route with the qualifying round first leg to be played on 16/17 August and the return on 23/24 August.

The Blues will learn the opponents when the draw is made in Nyon on 5 August and the 2016/17 Premier League season will begin on the weekend beginning 13 August – so it promises to be a busy start for the Blues.

The Blues will be one of five seeded teams in the qualifying round - the other seeded teams could possibly come from Roma, Porto, Borussia Monchengladbach, Shakhtar, Ajax and Villarreal – seeded teams cannot face each other at this stage.

Ten sides will compete for the right to go through to the final qualifying round – they play their second qualifying round on July 26/27 and August 2/3.

Several teams have been confirmed but with the Russian Premier League still to be completed, CSKA or Rostov will take the final berth and both Greece and Belgium operate play-offs for their final Champions League berths..

The Blues’ opponents could come from one of the following clubs:

Shakhtar Donetsk (Ukraine)*

Ajax (Netherlands)*

Monaco (France)

Fenerbahce (Turkey)

Sparta Prague (Czech Republic)

Steaua Bucharest (Romania)

Young Boys Berne (Switzerland)

1 x team from Belgium (TBC)

1 x team from Greece (TBC)

CSKA Moscow or Rostov (Russia)

*Will not meet if seeded

A seeding element to the teams who qualify for the play-off round could complicate matters, though the waters will be clearer after the third qualifying round has been completed.

City have met Ajax, CSKA and Fenerbahce previously in European competition..

The teams that lose the qualifying round will go into the Europa League. Leicester City, Arsenal and Tottenham have automatically qualified for the group stages of the Champions League and could be joined by Liverpool if they win the Europa League final against Sevilla.

We'll look at our possible opponents in greater detail prior to the draw.

The Champions League group stage games begin 13/14 September.

First Team News

The Engineer’s Five Greatest Hits

GRACIAS MANUEL: Saluting our Charming Man

It’s the end of an era for City as Manuel Pellegrini brought down the curtain on his three-year tenure with a 1-1 draw at Swansea on Sunday afternoon.

To mark the occasion, we look back at five of the Chilean’s best moments in the hot-seat.

First Team News

Talking Points: End of an era

A 1-1 draw at the Liberty Stadium which all but secured UEFA Champions League qualification but what did we learn?

@markbooth_mcfc rounds up all of the topics for discussion following our 38th Barclays Premier League assignment…

Picture Special

Picture special: Manuel's best moments