Reial Mallorca kick-off their Champions League campaign with a mouth-watering encounter against Arsenal at Son Moix on Tuesday, September 11. Mallorca were drawn in Group C at yesterday's draw in Monaco for their first ever venture into the Champions league group stages and will have to contend with Arsenal, Germans Schalke 04 and Panathinaikos of Greece. The draw could have been kinder, although Mallorca will be happy to have avoided Manchester United and title-holders Bayern Munich. Arsenal, quarter-finalists last season, will be the main opposition and boast an array of international stars such as Dennis Bergkamp, Sol Campbell, Thierry Henry as well as former Mallorca winger Lauren. Mallorca, who lost 2-0 to Arsenal in a pre-season friendly last month, fly to London for their penultimate game of the group on October 24 to play the Gunners at Highbury. Schalke 04, from the German town of Gelsenkirchen, have had a shaky start to their Bundersliga campaign and lie third to bottom, but are boosted by the recent opening of their impressive new AufSchalke stadium, said to be the finest in Europe. The German's star men are Danish striker Ebbe Sand, top scorer last season in the Bundersliga, and Andreas Moller, one of Germany's most talented midfielders ever, but who is now on the wrong side of thirty. Mallorca play Schalke in their third and fourth matches on September 26 away and at Son Moix on October 16. The trickiest away trip for Mallorca may well prove to be against Panathinaikos in Athens, Mallorca's second match on September 26. The Greens are renowned for their small, yet inhospitable 17'000-seater Apostolos Nikolaides stadium and are tough to beat in Greece. The Greeks, along with a handful of their highly animated fans, visit Son Moix for Mallorca's final game on October 30.

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