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Fernandinho wary of Celtic backlash

Press AssociationPress Association 26/09/2016 Mark Staniforth

Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho has warned his Manchester City side to beware a Celtic backlash ahead of their UEFA Champions League clash in Glasgow.

City head north on the back of 10 straight wins under Pep Guardiola and rated strong favours to heap more continental woe on Brendan Rodgers' men after their 7-0 mauling by Barcelona earlier this month.

But according to Fernandinho, City - who by contrast started their campaign with a 4-0 breeze against Borussia Monchengladbach - must tread carefully to avoid embarrassment of their own.

"Of course they (Celtic) had a painful defeat for themselves and their fans, but maybe that's one of the reasons they will step on the pitch with a lot more concentration, motivated to win this game," he said ahead of Wednesday's (Thursday AEST) match.

"So we will have to be very careful and stay very focused to not allow that to happen."

City and Barcelona are strong favourites to progress from Group C but Fernandinho believes the outcome of the four-team league is far from certain.

"The Champions League is always special, you always have to be careful, you always have to think that you cannot make mistakes - there's no relaxing, otherwise you'll pay for it," he said.

The Brazilian has flourished more than most under Guardiola's early guidance, transforming into a pivotal member of the City midfield during their perfect start to the new campaign.

And his presence will remain even more of a boost for Guardiola in the absence of Kevin De Bruyne, who limped out of Saturday's 3-1 win at Swansea with a hamstring injury.

City are yet to release precise details of De Bruyne's condition but he is reportedly set to spend up to four weeks on the sidelines.

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