Sergio Agüero signs new five-year deal with Manchester City

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At 26 years old, Manchester City’s Sergio Agüero has plenty of years left in his prime. The question is how healthy he’ll be during them.

Regardless, the defending Premier League champions have locked up their most dangerous scorer. With today’s new five-year deal, Agüero is committed to the club through the 2018-19 season, after which he’ll turn 31 years old.

“This club is special; the fans, the stadium, the staff, the atmosphere, the new facility we’re moving into – everything,” Agüero said, via the club’s website.

“We have enjoyed lots of success and some incredible moments but the overall vision for the future and where we are going are the reasons why I wanted to stay here,” Agüero explained, “to win trophies and to keep making history through my best years.”

Agüero joined Manchester City three years ago, with his 23 goals in 34 appearances helping the Citizens claim their first Premier League title. After dropping to 12 goals during the 2012-13 season, Agüero scored 17 last year, though injuries limited the former Atlético Madrid striker to 23 appearances – the first time in his career he failed to play in at least 30 league games.

Unfortunately for Agüero, the last two years have each set career lows in terms of minutes, with a player who averaged 2640 minutes in his first six European league seasons reduced to 1847 and 1538 in his last two. With fitness also a concern during this summer’s World Cup, Agüero has proved more injury prone with age.

It’s one of the few imperfections in the Argentine’s arsenal. When healthy, Agüero gives Manuel Pellegrini the elite goal-scorer he needs to keep City at the top of the table. With Luis Suárez gone, Agüero offers a strike rate that can rival any player in the Premier League.

And with his new deal in place, Agüero doesn’t plan on leaving the league any time soon:

“The reality seems to be that ever since I came here, during every close season, there have always been rumours suggesting that I might be returning to Spain.

“There has always been this speculation but I certainly never pay much attention to it.

“People hear this stuff flying around and they take it seriously but I can tell the fans and everyone at City to relax, I’m going to be here until I see out my contract.

Daly collapses during match, treated for heat illness

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HOUSTON (AP) Houston Dash forward Rachel Daly collapsed during the final minute of a National Women’s Soccer League match against the Seattle Reign as temperatures climbed into the 90s.

The 25-year-old Daly was stretchered off the field and taken to the hospital, where the team said she was being treated for heat illness.

The temperature at BBVA Compass Stadium was 92 degrees at the 3 p.m. kickoff. The Reign won 2-0.

[ MORE: Perisic talking with Man Utd? ]

The NWSL issued a statement that said the league had worked with the Dash before the season to schedule any afternoon games early in the year to help avoid heat issues. The teams took a hydration break late in the match.

“We will immediately review these measures to prevent this situation from occurring in the future,” the statement said.

Reign coach Laura Harvey posted to Twitter: “Proud of the team today. Some of the hottest conditions I’ve seen. Road games are tough but that was crazy.”

MLS roundup: Outrageous dive, posts doom ‘Caps; Ramirez stays red hot

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Six matches are in the books on a busy Saturday in Major League Soccer, and five of them finished 1-0.

How they got there? Much different stories. With the Cali Clasico still to play, let’s dig into the five that followed Seattle 1-0 Portland.

[ MORE: Perisic to Man Utd? ]


Vancouver Whitecaps 0-1 DC United

It’s especially difficult to win on the road in Major League Soccer, unless the hosts fritter away four good chances off the woodwork — including a Cristian Techera PK — and give away a spot kick of their own. Lamar Neagle converted the 61st offering after a sinister dive from Jose Guillermo Ortiz. He was taken off soon after, and is probably going to miss sometime when the DisCo is done with him. Outrageous.

New York Red Bulls 2-1 New England Revolution

Not one, not two, nor three, but four New England players saw a low cross slide by them for Daniel Royer to finish as New York came from behind to take all three points at Red Bull Arena. Cody Cropper committed a gaffe that allowed Bradley Wright-Phillips to equalize after a Lee Nguyen PK had put the Revs ahead early.

Colorado Rapids 1-0 Sporting KC

Homegrown defender and University of Denver product Kortne Ford has his first MLS goal, as the Rapids surprised the Western Conference leaders on Saturday. SKC outshot Colorado by nearly 20 attempts (Shoulder shrug emoji).

Minnesota United 1-0 Orlando City

There were questions as to whether NASL superstar Christian Ramirez could translate his game to Major League Soccer.

Yes. The answer is yes.

Ramirez has eight goals in 13 MLS matches, and should be hearing his name from a certain Bruce Arena around Gold Cup time. Those USMNT dreams of last season should come true.

Bobby Shuttleworth made six saves for his third shutout of the season. All have come at home.

Real Salt Lake 1-0 Philadelphia Union

Joao Plata keeps shooting, and the tiny Ecuadorian menace keeps scoring, too. His 36th minute goal was enough for the hosts at Rio Tinto.

Raiola: Zlatan to “100 percent” stay in Europe for two seasons

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic may be 35 and coming off major knee surgery, but that isn’t stopping suitors from lining up across Europe.

[ MORE: Perisic to Man Utd? ]

Ibrahimovic’s agent, Mino Raiola, says that MLS is not an option for the Swede over the next two seasons. From Sky Sports:

“Many clubs have asked for Zlatan. He can play two more years and will stay in Europe, 100 per cent.”

It would make sense for Ibrahimovic to stay around Manchester United, where he is admired by Jose Mourinho and coming off a season that showed he’s still capable of contributing at a high level.

But he remains beloved in Italy, and would be effective for most clubs in the Top 5 leagues should he return at even 75 percent of the Zlatan we’ve seen regularly.

Report: Manchester United, Inter Milan keen on Perisic deal

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Manchester United wants Ivan Perisic, and both the player and his current club are all about it.

Perisic, 28, is ready to leave Inter Milan, and the Serie A mainstays are happy to accept $46 million for his services according to Sky Sports.

[ MORE: No China for Costa ]

Primarily a left winger, Perisic moved to Inter from Wolfsburg at the start of the 2015-16 season. He scored 10 goals and added nine assists in Serie A play this season, and has kept up his production pace since moving from the Bundesliga to Italy.

United needs stars and depth for its Champions League campaign, and Perisic would buttress an attack with Marcus Rashford, Henrikh Mkhitaryan amongst others. He was a difference maker for Croatia at EURO 2016, and can do the same at Old Trafford.