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Champions League Play-Off Opponent Update

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The ping pong balls are all set to go into the pots.

Lars Baron

The most recent round of Champions League qualifying matches is over, and with the end of that round comes some clarity as far as who Arsenal may face in the play-off round.  The one wild card was Zenit; with their win, they are a seeded team, and thus cannot play Arsenal in the next round.  Here's what the two pots look like:

Seeded: Arsenal, FC Porto, Zenit St Petersburg, Bayer Leverkusen, Napoli
Unseeded: Athletic Bilbao, Lille, FC Copenhagen, Standard Liege, Besiktas.

So Arsenal will be drawn against one of the unseeded teams.  I gotta be honest - none of those teams worry me.  I'm not arrogant enough to say "Arsenal are guaranteed to win", but I look at that list and the only team that gives me any pause is Lille. And even that's not a "oh crap not those guys" feeling, more of a "that'll be a hard win but still a win" feeling.

The draw for the play-off round is this Friday, starting at noon CET/11AM London/6AM NYC/3AMPT.