Manchester City will receive a baptism of fire in their debut season in the UEFA Champions League, after being drawn in Group A alongside Villarreal, Napoli, and four-times European champions Bayern Munich.
Like City, the Serie A side have never before appeared in Europe's top-tier competition in its current format, but nonetheless will pose a considerable threat when the two sides meet at the Etihad Stadium in the opening group game on Wednesday 14 September.
Villarreal boast a wealth of Champions League experience, losing only five of their 26 fixtures in this competition, and reached the semi-finals as recently as 2006.
However, it is the Bundesliga giants who will pose the biggest challenge, as Bayern hold a proud history in Europe - the virtual ever-presents winning the Champions League in 2001, they have also lifted the European Cup a further three times.
"It's a fantastic draw," declared Brian Marwood, City's Chief Football Operations Officer. "There are four fantastic sides in this group, and it's going to be extremely competitive. I genuinely believe that these are four sides that can compete on an even keel.
"We feel that this is a fantastic part of Manchester City's history to be part of the premier European competition for the first time.
"Our fans are going to enjoy every moment, as they have over the last three years, which has been an incredible story for our football club.
"We really feel we can do well in this competition with the squad we have. We believe we can, and we have a squad that is blessed with great talent and endeavour."
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