Sergio Aguero is now the top-scoring non-English striker in Premier League history, after his hat-trick against Aston Villa took him above Thierry Henry in the goal charts.
But there’s still a sense that he is not quite appreciated as he could be in England, despite the 177 goals to his name, putting him level with Frank Lampard.
So why might he not be quite so well thought-of as he could be? On the Totally Football Show this week, Rafa Honigstein had a theory.
“We’ve become used to his brilliance,” said Rafa. “That’s the only problem he has. It’s taken as a given he’s going to score lots of goals, and he somehow doesn’t capture the imagination as much as perhaps Thierry Henry did or, more recently, Harry Kane, being English and being a bit more…statuesque.
“Aguero is a guy that almost hides in the shadows and pops up, to be at the end of a scintillating City move and taps it in from five metres. You don’t think “oh, what an amazing striker”, you just think “oh, City, what an amazing team.” But of course it does take a tremendous amount of skill, know-how and physical ability to be in the right place at the right time.
“I think it will take until he leaves to really appreciate him. At City, they will have a really hard time finding someone who fits the system so well, and has given so much to the team over the last few years.”
There’s also with accessibility: “He doesn’t really give interviews. People don’t really know who he is, or know what kind of character he is, so he’s not as relatable as someone like Henry.”
And all of this after it looked like his days might have been numbered under Pep Guardiola.
“A few years ago there was doubt that he would fit the Guardiola system, but he’s showed over the subsequent years that he fits the system very well. I think there was a game when they played Chelsea, with Jesus up front, and I thought ‘they look more of a team – what’s going to happen with Aguero?’ But he’s still there, scoring goals.”
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