Brendan Rodgers
Rodgers faces a tough first season as a manager in the Champions League.

Liverpool face a tough return to the Champions League after being placed in pot three ahead of the group stage draw in August following the end of the domestic leagues across Europe.

The Reds finished second in the Premier League and will play in Europe's premier club competition for the first time since 2009 next term, however it could be a return which could be short lived.

Brendan Rodgers' have been placed in pot three ahead of the drawn in Nyon in August, ensuring they avoid the likes of Greek champions Olympiakos, Dutch champions Ajax and Rafael Benitez's side Napoli – should the Italian side make it through third-round qualifying.

However, the good news ends there for Liverpool who will definitely be paired with one of Real Madrid or Atletico Madrid, the 2014 finalists, four-time winners Barcelona, holders Bayern Munich and Portuguese giants Benfica who all lie in pot one. FC Porto will join that list if they qualify.

In Pot 2, among the teams Liverpool could face include Serie A champions Juventus, big-spending Ligue 1 winners Paris Saint-Germain and 2012 runners-up Borussia Dortmund. Schalke, Shakhtar Donetsk and FC Basel represent the other possible opponents.

Those teams in the first three pots will be hopeful of avoiding the likes of Atletic Bilbao, AS Roma or AS Monaco who all lie in wait in pot four alongside minnows FC Copenhagen, Anderlecht and Salzburg among others.

It would be something of a baptism of fire for Liverpool, who responded from finishing outside the European places in the 2012/13 campaign to contest for the Premier League title last season.

Rodgers has already begun working on expanding his squad in the summer transfer window ahead of the demands presented by balancing domestic and European commitments and says a high calibre of players are required ahead of the new campaign.

"We're after players that are hungry, that have ambition to become better players," he said. "We need technical players that can play in a fast game and we need technical intelligence."

Arsenal - if they negotiate the third-qualifying round - and Chelsea, will be in pot one, with Premier League champions Manchester City in pot two.