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Chelsea loanee Andreas Christensen to test his mettle in Champions League Group of Death

Maja Hitij/Getty Images

For the first time in two decades, Chelsea are not in any sort of European competition.  No Champions League, no Europa League, no UEFA Cup, no Cup Winners' Cup (bring it back!), not even an Intertoto Cup or whatever other minor competitions UEFA may have organized over the years.

Fortunately, we're not completely without rooting interest.  Highly promising loanee Andreas Christensen will be there with Borussia Monchengladbach.  (We sure could use the 20-year-old's talents in the backline this season already, but I suppose it's best to let him play out the second year of his loan at Gladbach as per the agreed upon contract terms.)

Last season, Gladbach, who also feature the talents of former Chelsea prospect Thorgan Hazard, finished bottom of a tough group consisting of Manchester City, Juventus, and eventual Europa League-winners Sevilla, and their task hasn't gotten any easier this season.  Gladbach's reward for finishing fourth in the Bundesliga is a spot in Group C, the Group of Death (or the Group of Pep, with both Barcelona and Manchester City present).  That said, Gladbach will surely be expected to finish at least third (above Celtic) and continue into the Europa League.

Elsewhere, Leicester City get an easy draw in their first ever foray into the Champions League, getting Porto, Club Brugge, and FC Kobenhavn.  Fellow Premier League sides Arsenal and Spurs should also easily make it into the knockout rounds.

The Europa League draw is happening tomorrow; Bertrand Traore's Ajax Amsterdam will learn their fates then after their disastrous playoff against FC Rostov dropped them out of Europe's premier competition.

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