Champions League draw wide open

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Posted: Wednesday, August 27, 2014 8:28 am | Updated: 11:13 am, Wed Aug 27, 2014.

MONACO (AP) — Real Madrid's Champions League title defense takes shape Thursday at one of the most open draws in years.

Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Chelsea — the past four winners — are among the eight top-seeded clubs in the 32-team draw. However, lower-ranked seeding pots loaded with big spenders returning to the Champions League after years away promise to deliver trickier than usual groups.

Five-time winner Liverpool will make its first appearance since 2009 in Pot 3, decided by rankings over five years of UEFA competition results.

Manchester City, Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain — champions of England, Italy and France — are in Pot 2. Former finalists Monaco and Roma are in Pot 4.

The four-team groups cannot include two teams from the same country.

© 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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