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The 2007-08 winners have been paired with opposition from Portugal, Turkey and Romania as they aim to improve on last year's group stage exit

Oliver Platt, English football writer

The Champions League draw for Manchester United appears straightforward - but, then again, we said that last year. Once again, the Red Devils face trips to Portugal and Romania, this time to take on Braga and Cluj, but the former should not provide as stern a test as Benfica did last time around. "The most difficult match is likely to be the away fixture against Galatasaray, with the Turk Telecom Arena never a particularly welcoming venue. After the disaster of 2011-12, Sir Alex Ferguson will be taking nothing for granted, but in reality this is a group that United should comfortably win. Improving their home form - they beat only Otelul Galati at Old Trafford last season - will be paramount.

MAN UNITED
SEASON 2011-12
League:
Runners-up
Europe: Champions League group stage; Europa League round of 16
Manager: Sir Alex Ferguson

Appointed: 1986

Stadium:
Old Trafford

Capacity:
75,765

Best Champions League performance:
Winners three times (1968, 1999, 2008)
THE DANGER MAN
Robin van Persie

The Dutchman's prolific form during his final season with Arsenal was not limited to domestic matches as he grabbed five goals in eight Champions League games before the Gunners fell in the round of 16 to AC Milan. Van Persie joined United in pursuit of trophies - his last came in the 2004-05 season - but he must help the Red Devils improve considerably on their disastrous group stage exit at the hands of Basel to have a chance of continental success.

BRAGA
SEASON 2011-12
League:
Third
Europe: Europa League Round of 32
Manager: Jose Poseiro

Appointed: 2012

Stadium:
Estadio Municipal

Capacity:
30,154

Best Champions League performance:
Group stage (2010-11)
THE DANGER MAN
Hugo Viana

Braga's string-puller-in-chief, Hugo Viana is still only 29. Having fought his way into the side during the 2010-11 season - though he missed out when Os Minhotos beat Arsenal 2-0 int he group stages of the Champions League - he has established himself as the main man in north-eastern Portugal. Reportedly ready to commit himself to a new deal he will be keen to provide star forward Lima with a regular production line of assists as they look to fire the club into the knock-out stages for the first time.

GALATASARAY
SEASON 2011-12
League:
Champions
Europe: N/A
Manager: Fatih Terim

Appointed: 2011

Stadium: Turk Telekom Arena

Capacity: 52,652

Best Champions League performance: Semi-finals (1988-89)
THE DANGER MAN
Felipe Melo

Juventus fans may scoff at the notion of Felipe Melo being a vital figure in any team, but since swapping Turin for Istanbul a summer ago on loan, the Brazilian has been nothing short of fantastic.

The 29-year-old scored a host of goals as Terim's men won the Super Lig and quickly became a key figure amongst the club's raucous fans. He has not been without his controversies, however, after getting into a bust up with team-mate Albert Riera. A deal was eventually struck to bring him back to Turkey for another year.

CFR CLUJ
SEASON 2011-12
League:
Champions
Europe: Did not feature
Manager: Ioan Andone

Appointed: 2012 (second term)

Stadium:
Dr. Constantin Radulescu

Capacity:
23,500

Best Champions League performance:
Group stage (2009, 2011)
THE DANGER MAN
Pantelis Kapetanos

Having just moved to Cluj last year, the 29-year-old was injured when he began his first season –  but it didn't take him long to force his way into the first-team set-up.

Settling in quickly, the scarcely-capped Greece international finished the season as the club's top scorer, and could well be looking to use this season's Champions League as a vehicle to showcase his abilities ahead of the 2014 World Cup.

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