Only a victory will do at the Etihad Staidum this Wednesday, and ahead of kick-off Jack Beresford has highlight three players who need to deliver big performances.
The Argentine put in a solid display against Manchester United at the weekend when drafted in to replace the injured Eliaqium Mangala. If the 32-year-old is serious about challenging the Frenchman for a regular first-team place, a near-faultless performance here could help his cause.
Manchester City have kept just one clean sheet at home in the Champions League since their arrival in the competition back in 2011 and with Demichelis no doubt still haunted by the tackle that saw him red-carded against Barcelona last term, a fine show here is the perfect remedy.
Much has been made of the Ivorian’s decline this term compared with the near-superhuman efforts witness last season but, after a largely encouraging performance against the Red Devils, Toure will be expected to run the show against CSKA at the Etihad.
The 31-year-old was a key component of City’s 5-2 victory over the Russians at Eastlands last term and will need to be back running the show once again if the Sky Blues are to avoid another disappointing result and early exit from the competition.
A match-winning brace against Liverpool early in the season had City fans everywhere excited at the prospect of seeing a fully-fit Jovetic strut his stuff for the Sky Blues this term and though a hamstring injury has hampered his progress, now is the time for the Montenegrin to shine.
Sergio Aguero’s goalscoring exploits must be applauded but there is a growing concern that the team is too reliant on the Argentinean for goals, with Edin Dzeko and Jovetic contributing four between them to Aguero’s 10 in the league.
Having proven prolific on the continent with Fiorentina in previous years, this is the ideal game for Jovetic to step up and find the net as Alvaro Negredo did when the teams met last term.