Contenders await group stage fateFriday 28 August 2009
The lineup for today's 2009/10 UEFA Europa League group stage draw has been completed, with the 48 contenders divided into four seeded pots.
This week's 38 play-off winners join the ten losing sides from the UEFA Champions League play-off round in Friday's group stage draw which will take place from 12.45CET at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco. It can be followed live on video and audio on uefa.com.
The 48 sides are split into four seeding pots, with one from each being drawn into the 12 groups, though no team can meet another from the same association. Seeds are based on UEFA's coefficient system with last season's UEFA Cup winners FC Shakhtar Donetsk joined in Pot 1 by eleven other leading clubs. They include the side they beat to lift this competition's predecessor in May, Werder Bremen, and five former European Champion Clubs' Cup winners: AFC Ajax, PSV Eindhoven, SL Benfica, Hamburger SV and FC Steaua Bucureşti. The 1967 European champions, Celtic FC, are in Pot 2.
Games will be played on 17 September, 1 and 22 October, 5 November, 2/3, and 16/17 December. Where possible, teams from the same association will kick off at different times and, on Matchdays 5 and 6, on separate days. In the Round of 32 and Round of 16 draws in Nyon on 18 December, the top two sides from each section will be joined by the eight teams which finish third in their UEFA Champions League group.
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