UEFA Champions League Group C Preview - Predicted Lineups, Predictions and Fantasy Football Tips

10:39am Sep 11 2017

Chelsea, Atlético Madrid, Roma and Qarabağ FK feature in a difficult UEFA Champions League Group C

Chelsea F.C.

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Antonio Conte lead Chelsea to the Premier League title in 2016/17, meaning Chelsea enter the group as the seeded team – however, a tough draw means they will have to be at their best guarantee qualification.

After missing out on some key transfer targets this summer, Conte will hope his players avoid injury whilst competing on all fronts.

Star Man – Eden Hazard [£10.5m]

Eden Hazard started the season injured after breaking his ankle on international duty at the start of the summer.

After a goal scoring return for Belgium over the international break, Hazard’s season starts now.

Once he is match fit he will be the man pulling the strings behind Alvaro Morata.

Not shy from scoring himself, he will also have set-piece responsibility and Antonio Conte will be relying on the Belgian to guide his team though a tough group.

One to Watch – Alvaro Morata [£10.0m]

Antonio Conte has his sights set on Romalu Lukaku, but after Jose Mourinho beat him to his signature, Conte acted quickly to complete a £60m deal for Alvaro Morata.

Despite his goal scoring record, Morata could not hold down a starting place in Real Madrid’s starting 11.

Now at Chelsea, the Spaniard will be their main goal threat and should link up well with Hazard, making him an attractive UEFA Champions League fantasy option.

Predicted Lineup: Courtois; Rudiger, Azpilicueta, Luiz; Moses, Fabregas, Kante, Alonso; Pedro, Willian, Morata

Atlético Madrid

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Atlético Madrid finished 3rd in La Liga last season behind Barcelona and Champions Real Madrid, the latter also knocking them out of the Champions League at the Semi-Final stage.

The bookies have backed the 2015/16 Champions League Finalists to progress along with Chelsea so expect their players to feature in other manager’s UCL Fantasy teams.

Star Man – Antonie Griezmann [£10.0m]

Arguably Diego Simeone’s best piece of transfer business this summer was keeping Antonie Griezmann, the Frenchman’s loyalty due to the clubs transfer ban put a halt to a potential transfer to Manchester United this summer.

A first red card of his career in the first game of the season has led to a slow start to the season, however, last season’s club top scorer will be key in Atlético’s attempts to qualify ahead of either Chelsea of Roma.

One to Watch – Koke [£8.0m]

After originally considering Yannick Carrasco, I have decided to choose Koke as my one to watch for Atletico this season.

An Atlético player for his entire career, Koke is now an important part of the team’s success and has started the season brightly with 2 goals and 1 assist in the first 2 game of the season.

For 0.5m less than Carrasco, the winger will be looking to continue his goal scoring start to the season.

Predicted Lineup: Oblak; Juanfran, Savic, Hernandez, Felipe Luis; Juanfran, Savic, Hernandez, Felipe Luis, Correa, Koke, Carrasco; Griezmann, Gameiro.

A.S. Roma

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The 3-time Serie A winners finished as runners-up to Juventus in 2016/17 granting them automatic qualification to the Champions League.

Eusebio Di Francesco will hope losing Mohamed Salah and Antonio Rudiger to Liverpool and Chelsea don’t damage their chances, with new signings Diego Perotti and Aleksandar Kolarov arriving to help Roma qualify at the expense of Chelsea or Atlético Madrid.

Star Man – Edin Džeko [£10.5m]

Ex Manchester City striker Edin Dzeko signed for Roma on loan in 2015, making the move permanent a year later.

In 2016/17, he scored an impressive 39 goals across all competitions and already has 3 to his name this season.

With an array of talented players around him, service will be provided and he has the ability to make those chances count.

One to Watch – Radja Nainggolan [£8.5m]

Central Midfielder Radja Nainggolan scored 15 goals in 2016/17 across all competitions.

The Belgian is considered by many be one of the most complete midfielders in Europe, supporting his defence, aswell as having the ability to threaten offensively.

The play-maker already has 2 goals 1 assist this season and will be looking to take that early season form into the Champions League.

Predicted Lineup: Allison; Bruno Peres, Moreno, Juan Jesus, Kolarov; De Rossi, Perotti, Nainggolan, Strootman; Dzeko, Defrel.

Qarabağ FK

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So, the first task after the Champions League draw was to Google *Qarabağ FK*

After making it to the group stages of the Europa League for the last 3 seasons, 5-time Premyer Liqasi winners Qarabağ FK have qualified for the group stages of the Champions League for the first time.

In fact, they’re the first representation from Azerbaijan in the group stages of the Champions League.

Is Group C a 3-horse-race and Qarabağ FK are just there happy to be there?

They could pose some threat at home, having recorded a draw at Monaco and beating Anderlecht 2 years ago.

Star Man – Dino Ndlovu [£6.0m]

Dino Ndlovu signed for Qarabağ FK in August 2016 from Cypriot side Anorthosis Famagusta F.C.

The South African striker played a key role in Qarabağ FK’S winning the 2016/17 Premyer Liqasi title by scoring 10 goals in 23 appearances.

Spear heading the attacking in a 4-3-3 formation, Ndlovu’s goals will be essential if Qarabağ FK are to cause an upset and he would be a huge differential.

One to Watch – Michel [£5.5m]

Spaniard Michel (Miguel Marcos Madera) may be a familiar face to those of you from the West Midlands, having made 9 appearances for Birmingham City during the 2010/11 season.

Michel, who signed in August 2015, made 4 appearances in the Europa League last season for Qarabağ FK, scoring twice.

Having already scored twice during the Champions League qualifying rounds, could he be the enabler you are looking for?

Predicted Lineup: Sehic; Medvedev, Rzeniczak, Guseynov, Agolli; Garayev, Michel, Richard, Madatov, Izmailov; Ndlovu

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Thank you for reading ‘Champions League Group C Preview – Predicted Lineups, Predictions and Fantasy Football Tips’ which was written by @FFPundits_Drew