It should be two fun days into the UEFA Champions League group stage finals, with five knockout round spots still up for grabs and Europa League playoff spots at stake.
It begins with action on Tuesday, which will determine (1) a place in the knockout rounds in Group B; (2) the first place in Group D between Real Madrid and Inter Milan; and (3) the third-place teams from Group A and Group B, who will be awarded tickets to the Europa League playoffs.
If two or more teams are tied on points in either group, the first tiebreakers are: (1) points in matches between tied teams, (2) goal difference in matches between tied teams, and (3) goals scored in matches between teams tied teams tied. The full list of tiebreakers is at the end of this post.
MORE: Champions League draw date, seeds and rules
Tuesday’s schedule and group scenarios are as follows:
|Group||Matches||Time (ET)||TV channels||Stream|
|Group A||PSG vs. Club Brugge||12:45 pm||UniMas, TUDN||fuboTV, Paramount +|
|Group A||RB Leipzig vs. Man City||12:45 pm||Galavision||fuboTV, Paramount +|
|B Group||AC Milan vs. Liverpool||3 pm||TUDNxtra||fuboTV, Paramount +|
|B Group||Porto vs. Atlético de Madrid||3 pm||–||PrendeTV, Paramount +|
|Group C||Borussia Dortmund vs. Besiktas||3 pm||TUDNxtra||fuboTV, Paramount +|
|Group C||Ajax vs Sporting CP||3 pm||TUDNxtra||fuboTV, Paramount +|
|Group D||Real Madrid vs. Inter Milan||3 pm||UniMas, TUDN||fuboTV, Paramount +|
|Group D||Shakhtar Donetsk vs. FC Sheriff||3 pm||TUDNxtra||fuboTV, Paramount +|
Group A scenarios
Group A winner: Manchester city
Group A runners-up: Paris saint germain
3rd place (Europa League playoff): This is the only drama left in Group A. Third place will finally go to the team – RB Leipzig or Club Brugge – that achieves the best result in their respective match on Tuesday. If both teams get the same result and are still tied on points at the end of the day, Leipzig secures third place and place in the Europa League playoffs, based on goal difference (6-2) in the two games against the Bruges.
Group A standings
|1. Manchester City (X)||12||5||4||1||17||8||+9|
|2. Paris Saint-Germain (X)||8||5||2||1||2||9||7||+2|
|3. RB Leipzig||4||5||1||3||1||13||13|
|4. Club Brugge||4||5||1||3||1||5||sixteen||-eleven|
Group B scenarios
Group B Winner: Liverpool
Group B runners-up: Porto, Milan or Atlético de Madrid. It’s going to be a fun Tuesday, with all three battling for last place in the knockout rounds. Porto start the day one point ahead of the other two, but must also face a motivated Atlético in their group final. Indeed, it could work for AC Milan to play at home against the Group B leaders – Liverpool are expected to put up a reserve team with nothing to play for but pride.
The only way the tiebreaker for second place comes into play is if both Milan and Atlético de Madrid win and reach seven points. Since their head-to-head results would see them tied for points, goal difference, and goals scored, the fourth tiebreaker would be required: overall goal difference in the group.
3rd place (Europa League playoff): This could be seen as a good consolation for one of the three teams, but the Europa League competition could also be an unwanted distraction from the title quest in their respective national leagues.
Here are the tiebreaker scenarios: Milan and Atlético could lose or draw, staying tied on points for the last two places. In that case, the overall group goal difference would also be the tie-breaker used to determine third place.
The only other potential tiebreaker scenario is Porto losing and AC Milan drawing. That would leave both with five points, and Porto would finish ahead of AC Milan in the first tiebreaker (points in games between the teams, 4-1).
Group B standings
|1. Liverpool (X)||fifteen||5||5||fifteen||5||+10|
|2. FC Porto||5||5||1||2||2||3||8||-5|
|3. AC Milan||4||5||1||3||1||5||7||-2|
|4. Atletico Madrid||4||5||1||3||1||4||7||-3|
Group C scenarios
Group C Winner: Ajax
Group C runner-up: Sporting CP
3rd place (Europa League playoff): Borussia Dortmund
Yes, there is nothing to play for in Group C, except for the group stage prize money (which is higher in case of victory). Of course, Ajax would probably love to finish with a perfect record, and Ajax’s Sebastien Haller is also battling Robert Lewandowski for the top scorer crown.
MORE: Complete list of leading Champions League scorers
Group C standings
|1. Ajax (X)||fifteen||5||5||sixteen||3||+13|
|2. Sporting CP (X)||9||5||3||2||12||8||+4|
|3. Borussia Dortmund||6||5||2||3||5||eleven||-6|
|4. Besiktas JK||5||5||3||14||-eleven|
Group D scenarios
Group D winner: Real Madrid or Inter Milan. First place will be decided in a head-to-head match at the Bernabéu Stadium. Real Madrid have two outcomes available (win or draw), while Inter Milan have to win to finish in first place.
Group D runners-up: For one from Real Madrid or Inter, second place will guarantee a significantly tougher knockout opponent.
3rd place (Europa League playoff): FC Sheriff Tiraspol. The Moldovans’ European adventure will continue in the Europa League playoff. And that’s despite losing three straight group stage games after sensationally winning their first two.
MORE: Benzema will miss the clash against Inter Milan
Group D standings
|1. Real Madrid (X)||12||5||4||1||12||3||+9|
|2. Inter Milan (X)||10||5||3||1||1||8||3||+5|
|3. FC Sheriff||6||5||2||3||6||10||-4|
|4. Shakhtar Donetsk||1||5||4||1||1||eleven||-10|
Champions League group stage playoffs
Below is the full list of UEFA Champions League group stage playoffs:
- points obtained in group matches played between teams in question
- goal difference greater than the group matches played between the teams in question
- goals scored in group matches played between teams in question
- higher goal difference in all group matches
- goals scored in all group matches
- goals away from home in all group matches
- win in all group matches
- away wins in all group matches
- total disciplinary points based on yellow and red cards only
- UEFA club coefficient
A twist to the tiebreaker rules: If there are three or more teams stuck on points and tiebreakers 1-3 help separate one or more of those teams, then tiebreakers 1-3 are reapplied to the remaining teams that they are still tied before moving on to numbers 4-10.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.