If Manchester City are going to have any chance of advancing past Barcelona in their last 16 clash in UEFA Champions League, they’ll have to cope without having their top scorer on hand.
In the first leg, anyway.
Sergio Aguero will not play for City against Barcelona on Tuesday, as Manuel Pellegrini confirmed the Argentine international is still ruled out after suffering a hamstring injury.
The 25-year-old Argentina forward has scored six times in five Champions League matches this season but pulled his hamstring after scoring in City’s 5-1 win at Tottenham Hotspur on Jan. 29. Since then he has missed the last three matches for the Citizen and Pellegrini confirmed he will take no part in the huge clash against Barca on Tuesday.
“Aguero did not train today and is not on the squad list for tomorrow, he will not be fit,” Pellegrini told reporters. “We will see if he can be fit for Saturday but that is also difficult.”
How big of an impact will this have for City?
Well, Aguero is certainly their most lethal striker as his record of 26 goals in 25 games this season proves. and City have certainly missed the diminutive Argentine in the past few games, failing to score in their last two PL matches. But with Alvaro Negredo coming back, plus Edin Dzeko and Stevan Jovetic also adding goals.
Negredo has scored 23 goals for City this term, while Dzeko has 17. Of those 40 goals, seven have come in the Champions League and you would think that City will miss Aguero’s predatory instincts against a top team like Barcelona.
Only time will tell. But with Pellegrini hopeful Aguero can return to action this Saturday against Stoke, it seems as though City’s main man will at least be available for the return leg at the Nou Camp on March 12.
Let’s hope they are still in the tie when that trip to the Catalan capital comes around.