The draw for the qualifying round of this season’s Champions League takes place on Thursday, with Chelsea in the first pot of seeds along with some of the biggest clubs in Europe.
While that is a good thing, it is still possible that Jose Mourinho’s side could be drawn in the same group as some of the heaviest of heavyweights from Germany, Holland and Italy.
But of course there is the alternative that all football fans hope for when they sit down to watch their team pulled out during that entertaining but simultaneously bizarre ceremony. That is to be drawn against the relative minnows.
Gone are the days when a team was guaranteed six points simply by being pulled out against an unfamiliar name, but there is still a far easier route to the knock-out round to be had for Chelsea.
Here we look at the three teams the Blues may be hoping to be drawn against.
Pot two is full of big names including recent finalists Borussia Dortmund, Italian champions Juventus and German side Schalke. While Chelsea have endured some torrid times against FC Basel in the past, they now have one of their chief tormentors in the form of Mohamed Salah. They are likely to favour a trip to Switzerland over a possible stint in Ukraine to face Shakhtar Donetsk.
The Greek side are Champions League regulars but they rarely pull up any trees and Chelsea are likely to be very pleased if they are drawn in the same pot as Olympiakos. When you consider Ajax, Sporting Lisbon and Galatasaray are all possibilities, there is no real contest for preferred opponent.
The Slovenian side are unlikely to cause many sides a problem and it is something of a surprise that they have made it this far. When you consider that the likes of Roma and Monaco are also in pot four, Maribor are surely the most desirable opponent for Chelsea.