MANCHESTER City manager Roberto Mancini believes only a significant improvement in his side’s continental approach will suffice if they are to advance beyond the Champions League group stages.
In their only European fixture so far this season, City lost 2-1 away to Real Madrid having twice taken the lead. Given that their relative naivety was a considerable contribution to last season’s exit at the same stage and Mancini’s lack of European success as a manager before his appointment at City, the Italian has demanded they improve at home to German champions Borussia Dortmund tonight.
“Like we have improved [over time] in the Premier League, we need time to improve in the Champions League, but we don’t have a lot of time – only five more games, and we need to improve quickly,” said Mancini, who again has Jack Rodwell available but is still without the injured Maicon and Micah Richards.
“We need to not concede easy goals to drop points like we did against Real Madrid. If we want to go through, we need to improve very quickly.”
Arsenal tonight host Olympiakos but must do so without the injured Abou Diaby, after he suffered a thigh injury in Saturday’s 2-1 defeat to Chelsea, and goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny. Midfielder Mikel Arteta is to today undergo a scan to determine his availability.