Friday, August 31, 2012

Jonathan Wilson: Champions League Draw Baffles and Surprises

There are times when Uefa's seeding system seems significantly flawed and, while a Champions League group that pits Real Madrid against Manchester City, Ajax and Borussia Dortmund promises fun for everybody not directly involved, it does suggest major problems with the whole process. The champions of the three highest ranked sides in the Uefa coefficients surely shouldn't be meeting at this stage. Nothing highlighted the vagaries of the coefficient system quite so much as Dortmund's position in Pot Four. If ever evidence were needed that the Champions League is a tournament that protects the status quo and resists usurpers, this is it. Dortmund have won the past two Bundesliga titles and are on a record unbeaten run. The suggestion that they are anything other than an extremely good side is laughable. And yet, because their titles were preceded by several years in which they made no impression on European competition, they are ranked alongside Nordsjaellend, BATE and CFR.

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