Manchester City v Red Star Belgrade

Erling Haaland (left) was the Champions League’s top scorer last season

Manchester City will be without the injured John Stones, Jack Grealish, Mateo Kovacic and Kevin de Bruyne as they open their Champions League defence against Red Star Belgrade.

Defender Stones has not played since the Community Shield, while midfielder Grealish suffered a knock before the international break.

Kovacic was injured while on Croatia duty, while De Bruyne is out long-term.

City beat Inter Milan 1-0 in Istanbul in last season’s final.

“Every season we start the competition in the first game with the target to win the first game, then the group stage, then try to win the Champions League,” said boss Pep Guardiola.

“Nothing changes from before.

“The same for Red Star tomorrow [Tuesday]. It depends on our performance and our level. We’re incredibly happy to defend this crown but this competition doesn’t allow you mistakes.

“But always we were so strong at home, nine points from nine. When that happens you can win just one game away and you qualify. Tomorrow is the first step.”

Red Star won last season’s Serbian title without losing a game, but changed managers this summer and have lost two of their last three games under Barak Bakhar.

Source From: BBC Sport

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