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Football Preview: Top 5 Favorites To Win The Champions League

These are the candidates to reach the maximum European glory.

The wait is finally over. The Champions League returns this Tuesday in its 2022/23 edition, featuring 32 teams that will seek the ultimate continental glory, although let's face it, only a few are serious contenders for the title.

Let's take a look at the main candidates to win the Champions League, explaining why each team is where it is.

5. Barcelona

Barcelona is back among the candidates to win the Champions League after an extraordinary transfer window.

Only the signing of Robert Lewandowski gives the team an important plus. The Polish is the third top scorer in Champions League history with 86 goals, just behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, two beings from another planet.

Barcelona has the deepest squad in Europe, with two good players in each position. This aspect will give Coach Xavi the facility to tackle each game according to his needs.

Xavi had half a season with the club, where he showed significant progress in terms of the team's play. With a team full of stars, now is the time to make the leap in quality and fight for the biggest prize, the Champions League.

4. Bayern Munich

Bayern are always contenders. Yes, they lost Lewandowski, but the team is still fearsome as they have plenty of offensive weapons to beat any opponent.

It will be Julian Nagelsmann's second season on the bench after losing in the quarterfinals to underdog Villarreal. With the experience he has just acquired with the German team, we can expect a better campaign than the previous one, at least reaching the semifinals and from there looking to lift the trophy.

The Munich side has an interesting mixture of players that can perform both on the flanks and in the middle of the pitch. Thomas Müller will play a major role in the team, with the newcomer Sadio Mané, alongside Leroy Sané, Kinglsey Coman, Jamal Musiala and Serge Gnabry.

The only doubt regarding the team is the defense. Frenchmen Benjamin Pavard, Dayot Upamecano and Lucas Hernandez have yet to reach their full potential. Matthijs de Ligt and Noussair Mazraoui could take on a more important role as the competition progresses.

3. PSG

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It seems that manager Christophe Galtier has finally got the formula (3-4-3) to get the best out of the Messi-Mbappé-Neymar trio. When you have those three monsters on the pitch, showing a good level of understanding of each other, the team must be considered a contender.

Following the arrival of Luis Campos as sporting director, PSG has concentrated on signing players who are not big names, but who contribute to the system according to the demands of the game. Mukiele, Vitinha, Ruiz, Sanches, and Soler are some of the new players.

Although they do not have the same squad depth as last season, following the departures of Di Maria, Wijnaldum, Draxler and Paredes, the team has what it takes to go far in the competition.

It's not often talked about, but the center-back trio of Sergio Ramos, along with Marquinhos and Kimpembe, is among the best in Europe. They are all great defenders and know how to play the ball well.

2. Real Madrid

Real Madrid is always a candidate to win the Champions League. With 14 titles, far above any other team, “Los Merengues” have winning DNA, period.

It remains to be seen how the team will perform without Casemiro, the axis of the historic midfield alongside Luka Modric and Toni Kroos. Tchouaméni has so far shown himself to be a worthy replacement; however, it is in the Champions League where he will have to prove his worth.

Another major problem for manager Carlo Ancelotti is that he does not have a natural replacement for Karim Benzema (34), who led them to the Champions League title last season.

Otherwise, Madrid has everything they need to repeat as European champions.

1. Manchester City

The "Citizens" fell short of reaching the final last season, just minutes away from eliminating Real Madrid in the semifinals. This campaign might be different.

Manchester City is the team that plays best in Europe, imposes its style and is successful, even though they have not been able to win the Champions League in the last decade.

The team now has Erling Haaland, the lethal striker they needed and who is already making a difference in the Premier League.

Pep Guardiola's side has great squad depth, players with experience in the final stages of the competition, and stars such as De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva, and Haaland himself. Manchester City has everything to finally conquer Europe.