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Champions League Playoff Draw: Arsenal Face Tough Turkish Task, Napoli To Meet La Liga Rivals Plus More

The draw for the first round of the Champions League.

The draw for the Champions League playoff draw was made on Friday morning and the draw threw up some tricky fixtures for all involved.

Reinstated Scottish side Celtic will face Slovenian champions Maribor in the Champions route, though following the results against Legia it will not be a foregone conclusion by any means.

Arsenal, though, will face a tough challenge from Turkish giants Besiktas, while French club Lille will have to overcome Portuguese giants Porto.

There will be a return to Spain for Rafa Benitez too, as Napoli will take on Atheltic Bilbao. The Basque side performed admirably last term, but after Napoli’s summer transfer activity their path to European glory could be over before it has even began.

Standard Liege will take on Zenit St Petersburg and Bayer Leverkusen will also face tough trip to Denmark to play FC Copenhagen.

Champions Route:

NK Maribor vs Celtic
FC Salzburg vs Malmo FF
Aalborg BK vs Apoel FC
Steaua Bucharest vs FC Ludogorets
Slovan Bratislava vs FC BATE Borisov

League Route:

Besiktas vs Arsenal
Standard Liege vs Zenit St Petersburg
FC Copenhagen vs Bayer Leverkusen
Lille vs FC Porto
Napoli vs Athletic Bilbao

All ties will be played between the 19th and 20th of August, with the return legs coming 26th and 27th of August.

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More Stories Arsenal FC Athletic Bilbao Bayer Leverkusen Besiktas Celtic FC FC Barcelona FC Copenhagen FC Porto OSC Lille standard liege Zenit St Petersburg FC