Arsenal are no longer a top seed and could face Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Juventus or PSG in the Champions League group stage

Changes in Uefa rules have cost the Gunners

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The Independent Football

Changes in the way Uefa seed the Champions League means Arsenal will likely face a much tougher group stage next year than they did this season.

For next season Uefa have drastically changed the way teams across Europe are seeded, with the coefficient system still in place but only for teams in the second, third and fourth pots.

From 2015-16, the top eight seeds will go to teams who have won their domestic league meaning Arsenal are no longer a top seed. With all eight championships now decided the Gunners can form some idea of who they may face.

In pot one are Barcelona, Bayern Munich, Benfica, Chelsea, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, PSV Eindhoven and Zenit.

Arsenal's relatively good record in Europe over the last few years means they have more than enough points to go into pot two, which will also have Atletico Madrid, Manchester City, Porto and Real Madrid. Teams from the same country can't be drawn together so Arsenal will definitely avoid Chelsea.

Whoever finishes fourth in the Premier League will have to first play a qualifier to reach the group stage, so Arsenal will be desperate to beat Sunderland to tie up third place and avoid those extra two games.

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Whoever comes fourth in the Premier League will have to play a qualifier before the group stage

Should Manchester United finish fourth and then come through a qualifier, they too will be placed in pot two, but pots three and four are still to be decided.

The group stage is scheduled to start on 15-16 September with the final game due to be played on 8-9 December.

Next year's final is at the San Siro in Milan on 28 May.

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