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Champions League: Need to know

Ahead of the start of the 2018/19 UEFA Champions League group stages, a number of changes have been implemented which will affect Manchester City supporters.

Here's your handy guide about what to look out for ahead of the start of another exciting season of exciting European football.

Kick-off changes

One key difference to the traditional Champions League group format this season sees a change from the traditional 7.45pm kick-off time.

UEFA will this week begin a three-season trial of having two separate kick-off times for each matchday, as in the Europa League.

On each designated matchday, two games will kick-off at the new, earlier time of 5.55pm, while the other six matches will kick-off at the new later time of 8pm.

Manchester City have one group game that begins at 5.55pm – next months's trip to Germany to play Hoffenheim.

Our remaining five group games will all get underway at 8pm.

On the final matchdays on December 11 and 12, matches in the same group will kick off simultaneously, with Group D and Group G both being assigned the 5.55pm slots. Neither group contains a Premier League team.

However, all games in the knockout stages will kick-off at 8pm.

Drinks update

UEFA has lifted an alcohol ban that had been in place at all Champions League and Europa League matches.

It means that fans will be able to purchase drinks both outside and inside the Etihad Stadium, both for Wednesday night’s match and all subsequent home games in Europe this season.

However at matches in England, fans will only be allowed to consume alcohol in the wider stadium, not the stands.

Dates reminder

Following Wednesday’s home clash with Lyon, City’s remaining Group F schedule is as follows:

Tues Oct 2: Hoffenheim away 5.55pm

Tues Oct 23: Shakhtar Donetsk away 8pm

Wed Nov 7: Shakhtar Donetsk home 8pm

Tues Nov 27: Lyon away 8pm 

Wed Dec 12: Hoffenheim home 8pm

Round of 16, first leg: February 12/13/19/20 

Round of 16, second leg: March 5/6/12/13 

Quarter-finals, first leg: April 9/10

Quarter-finals, second leg: April 16/17

Semi-finals, first leg: April 30, May 1

Semi-finals, second leg: May 7/8 

Final: June 1 - Estadio Metropolitano, Madrid

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