Berlin: Borussia Moenchengladbach`s caretaker coach Andre Schubert says his resurgent side respect but don`t fear Premier League high-fliers Manchester City ahead of Wednesday`s Champions League clash.
Manuel Pellegrini`s City got off to a flying start in the Premier League with five straight wins, but stumbled to three defeats in their last four games in all competitions, including Saturday`s 4-1 loss at Tottenham Hotspur.
In contrast, Schubert has pulled Gladbach off the bottom of the Bundesliga table with two wins since stepping in after Lucien Favre`s shock resignation following five straight league defeats and a 3-0 trouncing at Sevilla in their opening Champions League game.
Gladbach are playing their first home game in European football`s premier club competition for 37 years.
"Manchester is a very good team, but are not all-powerful opponents. We`re not in awe," says Schubert, who was promoted from Gladbach`s Under-23 team following Favre`s departure.
Gladbach`s Germany winger Patrick Herrmann said he "can hardly wait to hear the Champions League anthem being played", while Swiss defensive midfielder Granit Xhaka is even hoping for a touch of arrogance from City.
"Manchester City will probably underestimate us. I don`t know if they actually know all of our team, but they will feel what we are about," said the 23-year-old.
Consecutive league wins over Augsburg and VfB Stuttgart have breathed some confidence back into the hosts.
Schubert acknowledged how fast things have chanced for him and, had Favre not resigned, he would be preparing Gladbach`s reserves for a regional league game this Friday.
"Basically, I`m a football coach. It`s no different than when you are playing in front of 200 spectators or 50,000 spectators," he quipped.
The 44-year-old, who coaches Germany`s Under-15s and had brief stints at second division side St Pauli and Paderborn, says he will even abandon his customary tracksuit for formal attire.
He cited the example of ex-Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp, who only wore a suit for Champions League games.
"If Jurgen Klopp could also squeeze into a suit, then so can I," said Schubert, who said the match will be a "celebration" for home fans.
Schubert says he still hopes his side can qualify from Group D, which also includes Juventus and Sevilla, but acknowledges his side faces City as the underdogs.
Having coached Gladbach`s Under-23 to a 1-1 draw against the Citizens in a pre-season tournament, Schubert was proud to reveal he "still had an a unbeaten record against Manchester City" with tongue very much planted in cheek.