Roma get Champions League draw boost after Basel crash out
Roma got a boost for the Champions League group-stage draw when Basel crashed out in the second qualifying round on Wednesday.
Basel had been penciled into Pot 2 based on their UEFA coefficient, but the Swiss club still had to come through three qualifying rounds to reach the group stage, only to fall at the first hurdle, 5-1 on aggregate to Greek side PAOK.
Roma, as the top-ranked team in Pot 3, will now move up to Pot 2, giving them a chance at a more favourable draw in the group stage.
The result could also help Liverpool, who are ranked one spot behind Roma and can still move into Pot 2 if Benfica fail to make through their two qualifying rounds this month.
Also eliminated were Bulgarian champions Ludogorets Razgrad, who had been set for a place in Pot 3 but fell to Hungarian champs MOL Vidi 1-0 on aggregate.
That means Dutch champions PSV Eindhoven will now be in Pot 3, should they get through the final playoff round.
Provisional group-stage draw pots (*denotes must come through qualifying)
Pot 1: Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Manchester City, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, Lokomotiv Moscow
Pot 2: Borussia Dortmund, FC Porto, Manchester United, Shakhtar Donetsk, Benfica*, Napoli, Tottenham Hotspur, Roma
Pot 3: Liverpool, Dynamo Kiev*, Schalke, Lyon, Monaco, FC Salzburg*, CSKA Moscow, PSV Eindhoven*
Pot 4: All other qualifying teams (includes Valencia, Viktoria Plzen, Club Brugge, Galatasary, Inter Milan, Hoffenheim)
The third qualifying round matchups were also set on Wednesday as the second round concluded.
The league path will feature PAOK vs. Spartak Moscow and Standard Liege vs. Ajax, while in the champions path Salzburg will face Macedonia's Shkendija and AEK Athens go up against Celtic.
The draw for the playoff round is set for Monday, the day before the third qualifying round beings.