According to Opta data, 40% of Champions League winners have come from Group F – where City have been drawn this season – while Group G is the only one not to have produced a winner.
As usual with this elite competition though, there is little to choose between several leading candidates and the market has remained wide open according to the bookmakers.
That will see Cristiano Ronaldo visit his former side of course, having won the competition with the Red Devils before four more victories with Los Blancos including each of the last three editions. There has been plenty of interest in the Serie A holders to conquer Europe since they signed the Champions League’s all-time leading scorer but their group looks far from straightforward.
Real Madrid may be the holders but having seen Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane depart since their triumph over Liverpool in the summer, bet365 made the reigning European champions a 9/1 (10.0) chance pre-draw.
They'll clash with Roma - semi-finalists from last season - plus CSKA Moscow and Viktoria Plzen and remain as 9/1 (10.0) chances to make it four victories in a row. Two of Madrid’s last three wins have come despite finishing second in their group.
Champions League Group Stage Draw in Full
Group A: Atletico Madrid, Borussia Dortmund, Monaco, Club Brugge
Group B: Barcelona, Tottenham, PSV Eindhoven, Inter Milan
Group C: Paris Saint-Germain, Napoli, Liverpool, Red Star Belgrade
Group E: Bayern Munich, Benfica, Ajax, AEK Athens
Group F: Manchester City, Shakhtar Donetsk, Lyon, Hoffenheim
Group G: Real Madrid, Roma, CSKA Moscow, Viktoria Plzen
Group H: Juventus, Manchester United, Valencia, Young Boys