AC Milan's Antonio Nocerino reacts during the Serie A soccer match against Atalanta at the San Siro stadium in Milan September 15, 2012.
(Photo : REUTERS/Giorgio Perottino (ITALY - Tags: SPORT SOCCER))
The 2012-13 Champions League Group Stage sees its first round of games take place on Tuesday. 32 club squads will compete to see which will prevail Europe's top club. Here is a look at Group C.
A year ago, AC Milan had a strong Champions League tournament but had the misfortune of running into FC Barcelona... twice. They tied them in group stage and in the first of their two legs of the quarter finals. However, the Catalans were too much for them in the second leg and AC Milan lost 3-1. However, this squad (which has the likes of Pato, Robinho, Prince Boateng, Nigel De Jong, Riccardo Montolivo and Mario Yepes) is now in a group that has no Barcelona and should be the favorites to win. If they play it right and avoid upsets to the likes of Malaga or Anderlecht, they should be into the knockout stage in no time.
Like Us on Facebook
Right out of the Belgian League, this team could be a shocker but not many are expecting them to go far. They are the underdogs in this group and the lessened pressure could be enough for them to obtain some shocks and surprises along the way.
Another team that is not expected to go all that far, but with a wide open group, they could win it if their wealth of talent turns up the heat. Joaquin, Javier Saviola, and Isco are all game changers and have helped Malaga to a second place start in a league that includes Barcelona and Real Madrid. This team has a great chance at getting out of the group and even winning it if they can shock AC Milan.
Zenit St. Petersburg
The Russian squad made it out of the group stage last year, but it was not a particularly memorable campaign. They won two, drew three, and lost one before dropping to Benfica in the Round of 16. Last year they had a relatively level group and they got out so with an easier one this time around, Zenit should be considered a favorite to get out of Group C.
|TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 18, 2012|
|2:45 ET||Málaga||v||Zenit St Petersburg||Group C||Estadio La Rosaleda|
|2:45 ET||AC Milan||v||Anderlecht||Group C||Stadio Giuseppe Meazza|
|WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 3, 2012|
|12:00 ET||Zenit St Petersburg||v||AC Milan||Group C||Petrovski Stadium|
|2:45 ET||Anderlecht||v||Málaga||Group C||Constant Vanden Stock|
|WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 24, 2012|
|12:00 ET||Zenit St Petersburg||v||Anderlecht||Group C||Petrovski Stadium|
|2:45 ET||Málaga||v||AC Milan||Group C||Estadio La Rosaleda|
|TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 6, 2012|
|2:45 ET||Anderlecht||v||Zenit St Petersburg||Group C||Constant Vanden Stock|
|2:45 ET||AC Milan||v||Málaga||Group C||Stadio Giuseppe Meazza|
|WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 21, 2012|
|12:00 ET||Zenit St Petersburg||v||Málaga||Group C||Petrovski Stadium|
|2:45 ET||Anderlecht||v||AC Milan||Group C||Constant Vanden Stock|
|TUESDAY, DECEMBER 4, 2012|
|2:45 ET||Málaga||v||Anderlecht||Group C||Estadio La Rosaleda|
|2:45 ET||AC Milan||v||Zenit St Petersburg||Group C||Stadio Giuseppe Meazza|
AC Milan: 4 wins, 2 draws, 14 pts
Zenit St. Petersburg: 3 wins, 2 losses, 1 draw, 10 pts
Malaga: 2 wins, 2 losses, 2 draws, 8 pts
Anderlecht: 0 wins, 5 losses, 1 draw, 1 pt
Ac Milan wins the group with relative ease while Zenit gets out of the group stage for the second straight year.
Read about other groups at the Champions League.
Group A Preview: ASG, FC Porto, Dyano Kiev, Dinamo Zagreb
Group B Preview: Olympiakos, Montpelier, Schalke 04, Arsenal
Group C Preview: AC Milan, Malaga, Zenit St Petersburg, Anderlecht
Group D Preview: Real madrid, Manchester City, Ajax, Borussia Dortmund
Group E Preview: Juventus, Chelsea, Shakhtar Donetsk, FC Nordsjaelland
Group F Preview: Bayern Munich, Valencia, Lille, Bate Borisov
Group G Preview: Barcelona, Benfica, Spartak Moscow, Celtic
Group H Preview : Manchester United, Braga, Galatasaray, CFR Cluj-Napoca