The draw for the 2007-08 UEFA Champions League group stage, made at the Grimaldi Forum in Montecarlo, has been relatively kind to Serie A champions Inter and European Cup holders AC Milan, but both Rome clubs have it all to do.
Milan begin their defence with tests against Benfica of Portugal, Scottish champions Celtic and Cristiano Lucarelli’s Shakhtar Donetsk from Ukraine.
After last term’s Scudetto success, Inter have set their sights on winning Europe’s showpiece event this term and have a favourable draw of PSV Eindhoven from the Netherlands, CSKA Moscow of Russia and Turkish club Fenerbahce.
Roma, whose Champions League adventure was emphatically halted by Manchester United last term will be less than delighted to face the English champions again along with Sporting Lisbon of Portugal and Ukranian's Dynamo Kiev.
Drawn out of Pot 3, Lazio were the lowest seeded Italian side. After seeing off Dinamo Bucharest in a tough preliminary round on Tuesday, they have been rewarded with Spanish champions Real Madrid, Werder Bremen of Germany and Olimpiakos from Greece in Group C.
One place in the group stage is yet to be filled, as the second leg of AEK Athens' third qualifying round tie with Sevilla was postponed to Monday 3 September due to the death of the Spanish club's midfielder Antonio Puerta on Tuesday. The eventual winners will play in Group H.
The group stage fixtures will be played on 18/19 September, 2/3 October, 23/24 October, 6/7 November, 27/28 November and 11/12 December, though Milan's last game will be on 4 December due to their participation in the FIFA Club World Cup.
The winners and runners-up from each pool will progress to the first knockout round in the spring, with the final set for Moscow on 21 May. Teams finishing third in each section will have the consolation of going into the UEFA Cup Round of 32.
Group A: Liverpool, Porto, Marseille, Besiktas.
Group B: Chelsea, Valencia, Schalke, Rosenborg.
Group C: Real Madrid, Werder Bremen, Lazio, Olympiakos.
Group D: Milan, Benfica, Celtic, Shakhtar Donetsk.
Group E: Barcelona, Lyon, Stuttgart, Rangers.
Group F: Manchester United, Roma, Sporting Lisbon, Dynamo Kiev.
Group G: Inter, PSV, CSKA Moscow, Fenerbahce.
Group H: Arsenal, Sevilla/AEK Athens, Steaua Bucharest, Slavia Prague.
Click here for all the group stage fixtures
Source: C4 Football Italia / UEFA