Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany insists he is unconcerned by his side's difficult Champions League group, in which they will face the champions of Germany, Spain and Holland.
Roberto Mancini's side face a tough task of escaping Group D to lift their maiden European Cup, having been drawn against Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund & Ajax.
But, whilst the Belgian admits the group is harder than last year's draw - in which City failed to progress ahead of Bayern Munich, Villarreal & Napoli - he claims he is relishing the upcoming ties.
“Games like this are why you are in the Champions League. I thought it couldn’t get more difficult than last year but there you go," he told reporters.
“It’s a great challenge. I think we are the sort of team which gets better as the challenges get even greater.
“It’s perfect for us. There won’t be any moments where we will be surprised. The motivation will be sky-high, the atmosphere great. I couldn’t think of a better way to play the Champions League.
“It’s all about how far you can get but it’s even nicer when you play against the best teams.”
The Belgium international also declared himself satisfied with City's start to the season, dismissing criticism of his side's performances.
“I’m happy with things so far. We won the Community Shield and have made a good start, with seven points out of nine," he added.
“If I had one message for the team, it would be ‘Well done guys’. We’ve always battled hard and shown how strong we are as a team. We’ve proved we have plenty of character.
“If we can win games when supposedly not at our best, what will happen if we do hit top form?”
After seeing City win the Premier League with the final kick of the season last time round, the centre-back does not believe things will be any easier this time around.
“I think this season will be a lot more competitive than last year," he admitted. "I don’t think any sides around us are weaker.
"They have all strengthened, so getting victories at this stage of the season is the most important thing.”