Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola believes Manchester City will progress to the knockout phase of the Champions League as the two teams prepare for their Group D clash.
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Guardiola insists City will provide a stern challenge for his charges at the Etihad on Wednesday evening, particularly under the guidance of new manager Manuel Pellegrini.
"(Manchester) City are one of the biggest clubs in Europe," Guardiola said. “You have to remember they didn't get through the group stages in the last two seasons but I'm 100 per cent confident they will get through to the next round.
"I think Manchester City in the last years they did big steps forward. They won the Premier League two years ago so they made a few titles and I bet to you this year it will be the first time they will qualify for the (quarter)-finals, and it will be the next step. In my impression, if they get to qualify for the (second round),
"Manchester City will be one of the toughest, toughest, toughest teams in the next round.
"It's the same with what happened in Borussia Dortmund last season. Last season was the first time they qualified for the next round, and arrived to the final.
"So Manchester City, I have this feeling, I don't know if I'm right, but I have this feeling it can happen."
Guardiola has never lost to a team managed by Pellegrini, but the former Barcelona boss heaped praise on his counterpart ahead of the fixture.
"No matter which club he is training, each team plays his way. His fingers, his footsteps, his trademark in his team is always there," Guardiola said.
"It happened in Villareal, in Malaga, in Real Madrid and if I beat them all the time it was because I was training one of the best teams in the world, one of the best teams in history in Barcelona, and sometimes it was easy for me.
"For me it's always a pleasure to play against Manuel because he loves to play football, he tries to keep the ball and his teams always play good."