Milan get relatively easy draw

Monte Carlo, August 31:

Defending champion AC Milan was given a relatively easy draw for the group stage of the Champions League on Thursday, while Manchester United and Chelsea will revisit quarter-final rivals.

Milan claimed its seventh European title in May with a 2-1 win over Liverpool. The Italian team was drawn into Group D with Benfica, Celtic and Shakhtar Donetsk.

Manchester United will face AS Roma in Group F, along with Sporting and Dynamo Kiev. United beat AS Roma 7-1 at Old Trafford in the second leg of last season’s quarter-finals. The Red Devils then lost to AC Milan in the semi-finals.

Chelsea and Valencia played in another quarter-final last season, and the Blues won with 90th-minute goal from Michael Essien in the second leg. The Blues lost in the semi-finals to Liverpool on penalty kicks. Joining them in Group B are Schalke and Rosenborg.

Barcelona was drawn in Group E with Lyon, Stuttgart and Rangers while Liverpool was drawn in Group A alongside FC Porto, Marseille and Besiktas.

Real Madrid was joined in Group C by Werder Bremen, Lazio and Olympiakos, and Inter Milan, PSV Eindhoven, CSKA Moscow and Fenerbahce were drawn into Group G. Arsenal has Steaua Bucharest and Slavia Prague in Group H. They’ll be joined by either Sevilla or AEK Athens. The two play the second leg on Monday.

The match was postponed because of the death of Sevilla midfielder Antonio Puerta and the devastating forest fires in Greece. Sevilla, which has won back-to-back UEFA Cup titles, leads 2-0.