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The Reds qualified for Europe's elite club competition as they finished second in the Premier League behind Manchester City and they could face a baptism of fire

Liverpool are set to make their first appearance in the Champions League for five years but it could turn out to be a baptism of fire should Thursday’s draw not go their way.

Brendan Rodgers’ side qualified for Europe’s elite club competition after finishing a narrow second to Manchester City in the Premier League last season but their lack of recent Champions League experience means they will be placed in pot three alongside the likes of Ajax, Olympiakos and Sporting Lisbon.

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Liverpool are, therefore, certain to meet one of Real Madrid, the defending champions, Bayern Munich, Benfica, Atletico Madrid, Porto or, perhaps most intriguingly, Barcelona and their former talisman Luis Suarez.

A nightmare group could also contain French champions Paris Saint Germain and Serie A powerhouses Roma, while there is also the possibility of Liverpool facing 2013 runners-up Borussia Dortmund and big spending Ligue 1 side Monaco.

Arsenal, meanwhile, take their customary position in pot one after overcoming Besiktas - alongside their London rivals Chelsea – while Manchester City are in pot two having qualified for the knockout stages of the competition for the first time last season.

Pot 1 - Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Benfica, Atletico Madrid, Arsenal, Porto

Pot 2 - Schalke, Borussia Dortmund, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, Shakhtar Donetsk, Basel, Zenit St Petersburg, Manchester City

Pot 3 - Olympiakos, CSKA Moscow, Ajax, Liverpool, Sporting Lisbon, Galatasaray

Pot 4 - Anderlecht, Roma, APOEL, BATE Borisov, Maribor, Monaco

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