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Need to know: UEFA Women's Champions League draw

Manchester City Women discovered their UEFA Women’s Champions League fate on Thursday.

Having secured a spot in the competition with a second placed finish last season, Nick Cushing's side will face Zvezda Perm in the Round of 32 in their European debut.

Here's everything you need to know before the competition kicks off...

Brief history

The Women’s Champions League is Europe’s elite club competition.

Originally named the UEFA Women's Cup, it debuted in the 2001/02 season before being rebranded for the 2009/10 campaign when, for the first time, the runners-up from the top eight ranked nations were able to participate.

The format of the final was also changed, becoming a single match played in the same city as the men's tournament as opposed to a two-legged contest.

Four time winners 1. FFC Frankfurt are the most successful club in the history of the competition, while Lyon are the defending champions.

Arsenal Ladies are the only English side to have won the tournament, defeating Umea 1-0 over two legs in April 2007. 

 

Format and qualification

In contrast to the men's tournament, there is no group stage in the UWCL.

The winners and runners up of their top national competition – be it league or cup – from the top 11 nations (plus one Norwegian team) received byes to the Round of 32.

Thirty six other entrants competed in the qualifying round. Teams were split into groups of four with the winner of each group securing their place in the Round of 32.

Key dates

The Round of 32 first leg will be played on either the 5 or 6 October, with the second leg taking place on 12 or 13 October.

The Round of 16 will be drawn in October and played in November. The quarter and semi-finals draws will be conducted in the same month, before the competition then breaks to line up with the men's game, resuming in March for the quarter-finals.

The final will be held at the Cardiff City Stadium on Thursday 1 June 2017.

In Nick Cushing's words...

"We're really proud we've got Champions League football.

"To have our men's team fighting on the pitch for the Premier League, the women fighting on the pitch for the FA Women's Super League and both teams competing in the Champions League is fantastic.

"This football club is very special."

 

In Steph Houghton's words...

"Our target was always to compete for trophies but to come away with Champions League football next season is a credit to every single player and member of staff at this fantastic football club.

"I promise next season, we'll play football the right way, improve our squad and we'll bring some trophies home."

Make sure you tune in tomorrow, when we'll have full coverage of the draw on ManCity.com, Twitter and Facebook.

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