Champions League: formula, free broadcast, Lyonnaises and Parisiennes in competition... Everything you need to know about the competition

Champions League: formula, free broadcast, Lyonnaises and Parisiennes in competition… Everything you need to know about the competition

Hostilities resume. Five months after Lyonnaises’ eighth European title, the Champions League returns on Wednesday 19th October for Olympique Lyonnais and on Thursday 20th October for Paris-Saint-Germain. If title hopes are still allowed for the French teams, the competition promises to be tougher than ever during this 2022-2023 edition of C1. Here’s everything you need to know about the competition.

An unalterable formula and diffusers

Never change a winning team. After a first test last season, UEFA decided to renew the same competition format with four groups of four teams, and direct classification in the quarterfinals for the first two of each group. If OL, Wolfsburg, Chelsea and Barcelona qualified automatically for the group stage, the other twelve teams had to go through one or two qualifying rounds to get here. This is the case of PSG, who had to get rid of BK Häcken (Sweden), at the end of September.

The final will take place on the weekend of June 3-4, 2023, at the Philips Stadium in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Perhaps it is in this stadium with a capacity of 35,000 seats that the Lyonnaises win their ninth C1, or where the Parisiennes finally manage to go all the way, after two finals in 2015 and 2017. The 61 Champions League games, since the group stage, will be broadcast on the DAZN streaming platform and for free on the DAZN YouTube channel.

OL and PSG already in the heart of the matter

Winner and semifinalist last season, respectively, Lyon and Paris will once again try to honor French women’s football in this new edition of the Champions League. But with new teams emerging in Europe, the meetings are likely to be close from the group stage.

Located in Group C along with Arsenal, Juventus Turin and Zurich, OL begins its campaign this Wednesday (9:00 p.m.), with the reception of the Gunners, who have in their ranks the English European champion Beth Mead. Already in the heart of the matter, the Fenottes will continue, on October 27, with a trip to the Turinoises, who had given them a hard time in the quarterfinals of the last C1. To negotiate these surprises, Sonia Bompastor will be able to count on many of her executives such as Wendie Renard, Ada Hegerberg or Selma Bacha, all classified with the Ballon d’Or.

The task promises to be even more difficult for PSG, who aspire to calm after a 2021-2022 season disrupted by the Hamraoui-Diallo affair. The Parisians will have to take care of their entry on Thursday, against Chelsea, current English champion. The Blues have in particular in their squad the Australian Sam Kerr and the English Millie Bright, third and fifteenth respectively from the last Ballon d’Or.

Real Madrid, which continues to progress throughout the seasons, and Vllazania Skhöder, champion of Albania, are also on the menu for Gérard Prêcheur and his troop. In the absence of Marie-Antoinette Katoto, still injured, the keys to the Parisian attack will remain in the hands of Kadidiatou Diani and Dutch debutant Lieke Martens.

Barcelona and Wolfsburg on the prowl

Badly defeated by OL in 2019 and 2022, FC Barcelona has the ambition to win its second Champions League after 2021. If the double Golden Ball Alexia Putellas has not yet recovered from her knee injury contracted during the last European Championship , The Blaugrana have other stars available such as Aitana Bonmati, Lucy Bronze, Asisat Oshoala or even Fridolina Rolfo. Barça is, therefore, the big favorite in group D, made up of Bayern Munich, Benfica Lisbon and Rosengård (Sweden).

Finally, the last favorite of this C1 seems to be Wolfsburg, who find themselves in group C with Slavia Prague, AS Roma and St. Pölten (Austria). Directed by German striker Alexandra Popp, executioner of the French team this summer, the German champion dreams of regaining C1, which she had conquered in 2013 and 2014. They promise a good fight until Eindhoven.

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