Edin Dzeko
City finished bottom of their group last year, can Manuel Pellegrini improve their fortunes? (Reuters)

IB Times UK takes a look at those players from Bayern Munich, CKSA Moscow and Viktoria Plzen who could derail Manchester City's hopes of qualifying for the knock out stages of the Champions League for the first time in their history.

Thomas Muller - Bayern Munich

Picking 'one to watch' from the holders of the competition who are equipped with some of the most naturally gifted footballers in Europe seems a bit futile, but keeping in mind the nature of this piece that nod has been given to Thomas Muller.

While the Germany international may not have the explosion of pace possessed by Arjen Robben or Franck Ribery, the 24-year-old has consistently been the poster boy for Bayern's tireless diligence from attack that has been so effective. Muller contributed 23 goals and 15 assists last season and has started all but one of Bayern's opening five Bundesliga games this campaign, suggesting the forward will continue to have a fundamental role to play under Pep Guardiola

Bayern Munich's previous best finish: Winners (2013, 2001, 1976, 1975, 1974)

Thomas Muller
Muller will be looking to ensure another early exit for City this season. (Reuters)

Vitinho - CSKA Moscow

Another Brazilian to take the Brasilero by storm in 2013, Vitinho has chosen the road previously taken by the likes of Oscar, Lucas Moura, Bernard and Neymar in the one to Europe, opting for CKSA this summer who are looking to fill the void left by the departure of the always conspicuous Vagner Love after he left the Russian giants for a lucrative move to China.

Vitinho had only made two senior appearances for his former club Botafogo before the turn of the year, but his rapid progression saw him become an integral figure in the Brazilian club's XI, operating effectively as an attacking midfielder alongside Dutch legend Clarence Seedorf.

Like many young South Americans who swap their homeland for the brutal contrasts of football in Eastern Europe, the 19 year old's contribution may be limited in the early stages of his career, but with a big gap to fill up front, he may find himself thrust into the spot light.

CSKA Moscow's previous best finish: Quarter Finals (2010)

Having made his move from Botafogo, Vitinho could have his chance to test himself against City. (Reuters)

Viktoria Plzen - Marian Cisovsky

Given the Czech champions are likely to be playing on the back foot in what will be just their second experience in Europe's elite competition, the Slovakian centre half with have to be in an authoritative mood throughout the group stages, particularly when faced with the challenges of marshalling the likes of Alvaro Negredo and Sergio Aguero on Tuesday night.

While goal prevention will be top of his agenda, Cisovksy has also proven to be quite the goal threat, finding the back of the net five times during the club's six Champions League qualifiers. Given City's defensive concerns in the early stages of the campaign, the six foot one inch defender may fancy his chances.

Viktoria Plzen's previous best finish: Group Stages (2011)