Manchester City's Riyad Mahrez hopes Tottenham familiarity is not a disadvantage

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The Premier League teams are set to lock horns on Tuesday at the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadum for a Champions League last-eight fixture

Riyad Mahrez is expecting a ‘very tough’ challenge from Tottenham Hotspur but remains upbeat of Manchester City’s readiness for Tuesday’s Uefa Champions League encounter.

Pep Guardiola’s men will visit north London for the first leg of their quarter-final fixture with hopes of securing an away advantage.

Following their League Cup triumph in February and passage to the FA Cup final on Saturday, City are still in contention for an unprecedented quadruple this season with Premier League title and the Champions League trophy also in their sights.

They have played Tottenham just once this season with the game ending in their favour but the Algeria international thinks the familiarization with Mauricio Pochettino’s men in the English top-flight could be a disadvantage.

“It'll be a very tough tie, but I think we'll be ready. We know them, they know us as well. We've already faced them many times and we've already beaten them, but maybe knowing each other very well could also be a disadvantage,” Mahrez told Uefa website.

“Everyone has done their bit, whether it's scoring goals, registering assists or defending well, and as the coach says, we need everyone – that's how you can get to the next level.

“I think we have a superb squad of players, with so much quality and a wonderful coach, so everything is in place for us to go all the way.

“Winning it would be really incredible. I've always wanted to win this type of competition. If it's not this year, I think it will be next year, and we'll do everything to try to win it. We'll have to beat Tottenham first and then we'll see.”

Mahrez once helped Leicester City to the last-eight stage of the Champions League back in the 2016-17 season before his club-record switch to Manchester last summer.

And he is now targeting a place the semi-final with the Citizens and also revealed his admiration for Lionel Messi and Barcelona.

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“I've always liked [Lionel] Messi, or players like [Hatem] Ben Arfa, [Arjen] Robben. I have a lot of memories [of the UEFA Champions League], especially from the era when Barcelona were shining, from 2010 to 2012. They were very enjoyable games to watch,” he added.

“I've always dreamt of playing in this type of competition. It's my second Champions League quarter-final, having reached this stage once with Leicester. I hope we reach the semi-finals and then the final.”

The Algerian winger has played five times in the elite competition this season with a goal to his credit.

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