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Txiki Begiristain: Manchester City will face tough UCL test against Steaua

Manchester City director of football Txiki Begiristain has warned that the club face "a difficult tie" against Steaua Bucharest in the final qualifying round of the Champions League.

City travel to Romania for the first leg on Aug. 16, with the return at the Etihad on Aug. 24 and a place in the group stage at stake.

Pep Guardiola's team avoided Serie A side Roma and Ligue 1 Monaco, but Begiristain said they would not be taking the 1986 European Cup winners lightly.

"It's going to be a difficult tie because Steaua are on the up again in Europe and have a lot of talent," he said.

"Pep can't wait to start the competition. The Champions League is obviously a big competition for him, for City and for everyone."

Roma, Ajax, Borussia Monchengladbach and Villarreal were also in the draw, and Begiristain said: "They are four big rivals also facing difficult matches.

"There are teams that play regularly in the last 16 and some of them will be out already. That is the good thing about this draw -- it creates passion and excitement from the beginning."

Steaua coach Laurentiu Reghecampf said he had hoped to draw "any club but City" but added: "We will have a positive approach and let's see what will be.

"We have a chance, and for sure our players will have extra motivation."

Steaua have not reached the group stage of the Champions League since 2014.

If City can overcome them, they will go into pot two for the group stage draw and could potentially face Guardiola's former clubs Bayern Munich and Barcelona.

Jonathan is ESPN FC's Manchester City correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @jonnysmiffy.

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