Ruben Dias says he is ready to thrive on the pressure of expectation as City prepare to launch our 2020/21 Champions League campaign at home to Porto tomorrow night.

The Portuguese defender moved to City from Benfica late last month armed with a reputation for being one of Europe’s most accomplished central defenders.

It means the spotlight and pressure on the 23-year-old will be intense as he prepares to make his first European appearance for the Club at the Etihad.

However, rather than a hindrance, Dias says the added pressure and expectation of playing for City and helping in our quest for European success is something that he both expected and is excited about.

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“I had pressure when I was young. I had pressure when I got to Benfica’s first team. I got pressure when I went to the national team and I have pressure now,” Dias declared.

“The pressure is greater. At Benfica, we always play to win and here it is nothing different. The objective is always to be winning. It's a different context. We are at a different level.

“The pressure is of a very high level. That’s why I came here. I have had this time to prepare to take this challenge in the best way possible.

“It is part of football. The higher you go, the more pressure you have. I like it. It’s all good.”

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City will step out at the Etihad with hopes high that we can kick on and improve on last season’s Champions League showing where we went out at the quarter-final stage to Lyon.

Pep Guardiola’s side have again been spoken about as one of the tournament’s most fancied sides – and Dias said he was hugely excited about making his European bow and the Club’s prospects of success.

“I’m really happy to be here and to have the opportunity to play in this competition for a team like City,” Dias added.

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“It was obviously also one of the reasons I came here, because of the club, the way they play and the way they play to win, especially in this competition.

"Obviously, City are in a big group of top teams who can win (the Champions League).

“Some are close, some are a little bit further away but every year it starts from zero. It’s a new year, new players in the team. We will make the reset.

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“All the things we have done well up to know, we will try to keep getting better and better.”

Given his Portuguese background, Dias knows all about the threat of Portuguese champions Porto better than anybody else in the City dressing room.

And he admitted he had already supplied some inside information to his team-mates.

“I am the person who knows them best and obviously I will try to help the best way I can. I know them well. Hopefully, it will be good intel for the way we approach the game,” Dias added.

“They are a strong team. They know what they need to do on the pitch, they are very good at dead balls. We know we have a difficult game ahead of us and we need to be strong in our game to get the win.”

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