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City must use Barcelona knowledge in last 16 clash, says Villa

Spanish strike ace David Villa believes City’s knowledge of Barcelona is key to their chances of success in the Champions League last-16 tie.

Manager Manuel Pellegrini and City’s players know what they are up against having faced the Blaugrana at this stage of the Champions League last season.

Barca are in excellent form, having extended their winning streak to 11 games with the win over Levante on Sunday.

But New York City FC striker Villa, who played at Camp Nou for Barca from 2010-2013, believes his old side are beatable.

“I think it is a very close tie,” Villa, who took part in a football challenge with Sergio Aguero last week, said. “City and Barcelona are two of the best clubs in the world with great players so I’m sure it will be a very good tie to watch.

“I think that Barcelona was also playing well before but they didn’t get the results and always when you win games you have more confidence.

“Now they are in a very good form. They win games, they have closed the gap with Real Madrid and they won against Atletico - a very difficult team to beat - in Copa del Rey so they are in a good moment.

“I’m sure that Manuel Pellegrini and all his staff know Barcelona very well. When you face this kind of teams you have to make sure that you make it difficult for them and try to take advantage of his weaknesses.”

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City v Barcelona: Past encounters

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Last season's Champions League first leg clash between City and Barcelona at the Etihad Stadium marked the first occasion the two sides had ever met in a competitive fixture.