City sent out a signal of intent to regain the league title they surrendered last season with an ominous 4-0 hammering of Newcastle on Monday night.
New manager Manuel Pellegrini has strengthened his squad with the acquisitions of Jesus Navas, Fernandinho, Stevan Jovetic and Alvaro Negredo and they possess a formidable array of attacking talent with Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko, David Silva and Samir Nasri among their ranks.
Such selection headaches underline the enormity of the task facing the newly-promoted Bluebirds, who started their first top-flight campaign in 51 years with a 2-0 defeat at West Ham last weekend.
Scotland goalkeeper Marshall said: "In terms of the numbers and quality they have got it is hard to touch them, particularly given the players they have signed in the summer as well.
"No-one expects us to get anything out of games against sides like these in the top-four, if we managed to get anything out of them it would be a bonus.
"There is not as much pressure on us. They are coming to our place and we will try and make it is hard as we can for them.
"We know the quicker we can get points on the board the better as then we can start to maybe look up the league instead of down.
"Ultimately we know survival is the main aim, it would be massive for the club and gives us a foundation going forward into next year."
Cardiff are set to be able to field summer signing Andreas Cornelius for the first time after the Danish striker shook off an ankle injury.
The 20-year-old made the move to the Premier League after making a big impression at FC Copenhagen, and Marshall has no doubt the 6ft 4in forward can cut it in the Premier League.
He said: "He picked up that injury which set him back but he scored a couple of goals in pre-season and he has looked sharp since being back in training.
"He is an international player and he has scored goals, he is clearly a good player and hopefully he can chip in for us."
If they are to get anything out of City's visit to the Cardiff City Stadium, the hosts will need to show a vast improvement from their performance at Upton Park.
Marshall does not believe it was down to any nerves among the squad, but acknowledges they were well below their best on the day.
"We never really played," he said.
"We took 20 minutes to get going in the first half and we never really put West Ham under pressure.
"The goals we conceded were also disappointing especially when looking for a good result in your first game."