A striker being benched for consecutive fixtures, especially amid the multi-formation – some of them strikerless – era Premier League football now resides in, usually isn’t a big deal. But not every striker is quite a special as Sergio Aguero.
We’re talking about one of the most lethal strikers of his generation, helping fire the Citizens to two Premier League titles with 154 goals in 234 appearances, still nowhere near his expiration date being overlooked in favour of a 19-year-old in Gabriel Jesus who had never set foot in European football before mid-January.
Indeed, it seems something isn’t quite right between Pep Guardiola, a particularly picky manager, and the Argentine assassin, with Gabriel’s youthful energy and ability to switch between attacking roles seemingly favoured to Aguero’s well-proven proficiency.
After being given just a seven-minute runout against Swansea City on Sunday, Aguero told reporters that although he’d like to stay at the Etihad Stadium, his future beyond the summer would come down to the wishes of the club.
“No, no, I don’t want to leave. I have to help the team as much as I can in these three months. Afterwards we’ll see what the club wants to do with me.
“In three years, my contract is up – that’s why I say I’m happy at the club. In these last three months that are left I have to help the club and, as I say, the club will decide if I have a place here or not.”
No need to hit the panic button just yet – according to BBC Sport and several other publications, City have no intention of letting Aguero leave at the end of the season.
Yet, if there is a fundamental friction between Aguero and Guardiola, it does make more sense for City to sell this summer; there will be plenty of time left on his contract, he’ll have turned 29 and another long-term injury would likely affect his value.
The Times claim City rate him at in excess of the £80million mark, with PSG interested, a significant fee that would allow Guardiola extra funds to continue shaping the squad he inherited from Manuel Pellegrini around his own philosophy.
So, City fans, with all that in mind, should Guardiola sell Aguero this summer?