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Begiristain upbeat over Blues' Champions League prospects



City's director of football Txiki Begiristain eyes progress in the UEFA Champions League following the much-anticipated draw in Monaco.

The Blues have fallen short in the group stages of the competition in the previous two campaigns following unfavourably tough draws, however having learned their opponents for their latest forays into Europe, Begiristain believes the team will fair better this time around.

City have been pitted against holders Bayern Munich, along with CSKA Moscow of Russia and Czech side Viktoria Plzen in Group D.

Of the European champions, Txiki said: "They won three trophies last season so of course they will be very strong, but already this summer we have played a friendly and now we have the real competition."

Russian side CSKA Moscow, seeded above City in pot two will be considered the Blues' main rivals for qualification to the last 16 alongside Bayern, but Begiristain is not taking the Czechs from Plzen for granted either.

"We have to be careful of Viktoria Plzen also and respectful of all the teams", he said.

"They (CSKA) are the champions of the Russia league and are doing well. They have a good team with some good players and it will be difficult, but we have a lot of confidence this season.

"We have improved the team, we have a new manager with a lot of experience in the Champions League and we hope we will be stronger in the Champions League."

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