Holders Liverpool have been seeded in the first qualifying round of this season’s Champions League, Uefa has confirmed.

Although Liverpool finished outside of an automatic qualifying position in the Premier League, Liverpool qualiified for next season’s tournament by virtue of winning last season’s competition.

Football Association chief executive Brian Barwick, meanwhile, has praised Uefa for granting Liverpool the opportunity to defend their crown.

Liverpool were reportedly unhappy at being forced to play in the first round qualifiers and have had to cancel a lucrative tour to Japan.

But Barwick said: “The theory that Uefa would get to a situation where Liverpool wouldn’t be allowed back in it was, for us, untenable.

“I thought Uefa did a fantastic job. Liverpool start where they start. They just have more matches to go before they win it.”