Paris Saint Germain and new boss Unai Emry begin their quest for European glory on Tuesday when they host Arsenal in their Champions League Group A opener in the French capital.
Ahead of the game at the Parc des Princes, Spaniard Emry, who was brought in to replace Laurent Blanc at the helm of the French champions said: “I really expect a great game, I expect a great duel. I hope we’re going to have a great game and that things will go well for us against this great team, one that will use the qualities it has: playing with their attackers, keeping possession, which they enjoy doing but also defending well.”
While PSG have stuttered on the domestic scene of late, Arsenal, who have failed to go beyond the last 16 in their past six participations, head into the tie with renewed optimism having recovered from a slow start in the Premier League to win their last two matches.
In Group B, last season’s quarter finalists Benfica welcome Besiktas to the Estádio da Luz in a battle of the Portugese and Turkish champions.
It will be the first time these clubs have meet on the European stage.
Scottish champions Celtic make the daunting trip to the Camp Nou as they face five times European champs Barcelona in their opening Group C match.
Completing that Group are Manchester City and Borussia Monchengladbach who square off at the Etihad.
Man City have made a cracking start to their new era with Pep Guardiola at the helm and after beating Man United at the weekend will be in confident mood.
PSV and Atletico Madrid will renew hostilities when they clash in Eindhoven for their group D opener.
Phillip Cocu’s Dutch champions will look for a modicum of revenge from last season when Atletico enjoyed an 8-7 penalty shootout victory in the first round knockout stage following 210 goalless minutes over the two legs.
Atletico lost last season’s final to city rivals Real Madrid – also on penalties.