Goal.com readers back Manchester United to win the Champions League

Over a fifth of Goal.com readers believe that Manchester United will win this year’s Champions League, despite being knocked out in the group stages last year.

The Red Devils, who kick-off this season’s campaign against Galatasaray on Wednesday night at Old Trafford, picked up 22.66 per cent of the vote.

Defending champions Chelsea, who have seen their talisman from last season, Didier Drogba, depart for Shanghai, polled in second placed with 20.12%.

Barcelona, now led by new manager Tito Vilanova, rounded off the top three with 15.07% of the vote, meaning nearly 85% of readers believe a team other than the favourites will win the Champions League.

Having started their campaign with a win against Montpellier, 14.74% of readers backed Arsenal to go all the way this year.

Meanwhile, Real Madrid, helmed by two-time Champions League winner Jose Mourinho and victorious against Manchester City on Tuesday, only polled in fifth with 11.72% of the vote.

Serie A champions Juventus were the highest ranked club outside of Spain and England, but only picked up 5.6% of the vote.

Manchester City, despite winning the Premier League, were only backed by 3.66% of readers, and Bayern Munich, Champions League finalists last year, came eighth with 3.35% of the vote.

Big spending Paris Saint-Germain picked up just 0.75% of the vote, and AC Milan, who have reached the final three times in the last decade, only managed 0.57%.

The results mean that 66.18% of readers expect an English team to win the Champions League, while 26.79% predict the winner will come from Spain.

Borussia Dortmund, Man City and Real Madrid, despite being the reigning champions of their respective leagues, are all fancied less than teams who finished below them last season.

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