Trending: Champions League revamped, Pep back to Barcelona

ESPN FC’s Steve Nicol presents a few of the Champions League groups to look out for in this year’s competition.
Take an in-depth look at the UCL draw and see how each of the teams will line up in this year’s competition.

Here are the latest stories for Friday.

CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Europe’s top four leagues will have four guaranteed places in the Champions League group stage from the 2018-19 season, UEFA has confirmed.

– Pep Guardiola will return to the Camp Nou after Manchester City and Barcelona were drawn together in the Champions League group stage draw on Thursday.

Marcotti: Guardiola’s Barcelona return headlines draw

– Group-by-group previews and predictions

EUROPA LEAGUE: Manchester United will face Fenerbahce and Feyenoord in Group A in the 2016-17 Europa League. FULL DRAW

– West Ham failed to claim a place in the group stage of the Europa League as they were beaten by Romanian champions Astra Giurgiu. Sassuolo, St Etienne, Shakhtar Donetsk, Olympiakos, Panathinaikos and Fenerbahce all booked their places in Thursday’s playoff round ties.

REAL MADRID: Coach Zinedine Zidane admits James Rodriguez’s lack of playing time is “a problem” but maintains that he is trying to make all of his players feel important.

– Portugal star Cristiano Ronaldo was named UEFA Best Player in Europe following the Champions League draw ceremony on Thursday.

ARSENAL: Arsene Wenger has confirmed Arsenal are closing in on signing striker Lucas Perez and centre-back Shkodran Mustafi but says the deals are yet to be completed.

– Wenger has said he will make a late decision on whether to start Mesut Ozil at Watford on Saturday.

– Takuma Asano will spend this season on loan at Stuttgart.

BELGIUM:  Thierry Henry will join the Belgium national team’s coaching staff as Roberto Martinez’s assistant.

SPAIN: Iker Casillas, Spain’s most-capped player, was left out of Julen Lopetegui’s first squad as the new coach of La Roja on Friday.

JUVENTUS: General manager Beppe Marotta is hopeful the Italian champions will sign Blaise Matuidi from Paris Saint-Germain but said there is “zero possibility” of Real Madrid’s James Rodriguez joining.

WEST HAM: The club expect to complete the signing of striker Simone Zaza from Juventus later on Friday.

SOUTHAMPTON: Boss Claude Puel says defender Jose Fonte has now agreed to stay at the club despite interest from Manchester United.

MAN CITY: Everton manager Ronald Koeman says he has “no interest” in signing Manchester City goalkeeper Joe Hart.

TOTTENHAM: Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish has told Tottenham they are wasting their time trying to sign Wilfried Zaha after claiming to reject a ÂŁ12 million bid for the winger.

– Tottenham are considering a move for Manchester City defender Eliaquim Mangala before Wednesday’s transfer deadline, a source close to the club has told ESPN FC.

LIVERPOOL: Striker Mario Balotelli is attracting interest from French side Nice, coach Lucien Favre confirmed on Thursday.

BARCELONA: Sporting director Robert Fernandez hopes a deal for Valencia striker Paco Alcacer can be done in the coming days. 

– Jasper Cillessen has completed his move from Ajax to Barcelona, the Spanish champions have announced. And in turn Claudio Bravo has moved to Manchester City for a reported ÂŁ17 million.

– La Liga side Granada have confirmed the arrival of Barcelona midfielder Sergi Samper on a one-year loan deal. While right-back Douglas has joined fellow La Liga side Sporting Gijon on a season-long loan.

PSG: Salvatore Sirigu has joined Sevilla on a season-long loan from Paris Saint-Germain, ending his search for a new club.


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