Sergio Aguero’s arrival at Barcelona in the summer came with many expectations as both the club and the striker looked to click refresh on their prospects.
The Manchester City veteran joined Barca at a time when the club was plagued with budget troubles, while Aguero himself was searching for a new home to play a more central role in after spending much of last season on the bench due to illness and injury.
But the Argentine’s role at Camp Nou has not been productive thus far with just two appearances and a chest trouble that will likely see him miss football for the next three months.
Sergio Aguero started his career in La Liga where he spent the first five years of his senior career playing for Atletico Madrid. Despite not being a prolific goalscorer, Aguero managed to stay in the headlines alongside the likes of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, who also were starting to make a name for themselves.
His relative success at Atletico rewarded him with a Manchester City contract where he would go on to spend the next decade and become one of the most successful strikers in the Premier League.
Aguero’s career at Manchester City has been phenomenal as he has scored 184 goals in 275 appearances for the club in the Premier League.
With 260 goals to his name across all competitions, Aguero ended his career at Etihad Stadium by being the club’s all-time top goalscorer by a wide margin.
He has helped the club win three Premier League titles, one FA Cup, and five League cups. These feats have earned him numerous honours, including a statue at Etihad Stadium alongside Vincent Kompany and David Silva.
Despite the numerous accolades to his name, the Argentine’s season with Manchester City last season has been underwhelming. A combination of injuries, illness and squad rotation meant that he only made just 14 appearances for the team across the season, starting just nine times.
He has been able to score just thrice out of those appearances, bringing into doubt the star’s future with the club. Pep Guardiola was reportedly keen on finding a replacement for the aging star and it was announced in May that his contract would be allowed to expire, leaving him as a free agent.
A GIFT FOR BARCELONA
Barcelona’s troubles with their finances and squad are well-known, and with the imminent departure of their talisman Lionel Messi, the club was keen to sign on a striker who could keep their championship hopes alive. After the departure of Luis Suarez to Atletico Madrid last year, the club also lacked a No. 9.
Erling Haaland was too expensive and the willingness of Aguero to take a 50% paycut made him an obvious choice to take into the team. As things stood back then, this also made the prospect of Sergio Aguero playing alongside his compatriot Lionel Messi and the duo already played together for the Argentine national team.
DISAPPOINTING THREE MONTHS
Since his arrival at Camp Nou, Barcelona had a busy three months that included a complete overhaul of the team. Aguero’s hopes of playing alongside Lionel Messi have crashed after the all-time great announced his departure in August, while Memphis Depay joined the club from Lyon.
After a stunning international summer where he helped Argentina win the Copa America, Aguero picked up a calf injury that saw him miss fixtures throughout August and September. He made his debut for the team on 17 October when he came off the bench in the 85th-minute in the game against Valencia.
The El Clasico has been a thrilling contest once again this season with the ailing Barca squad showing resilience to take the game to the wire. Aguero scored the first goal of the season against Real Madrid in extra time, but it was not enough to stop Real Madrid from securing a 2-1 win at Camp Nou.
He was handed only his second start of the season in the game against Alaves on October 30, but he suffered from chest pain and had to be withdrawn early in the game.
Barcelona then announced that the Argentine will miss the games for the next three months as he recovers from cardiac arrhythmia.
WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD?
Once known as Europe’s best team, Barcelona have gone downwards for the past two seasons. They sit at the ninth spot in the table with just four wins from 11 fixtures, leading to the dismissal of Ronald Koeman as coach last week.
With Aguero set to miss at least 14 games across all competitions over the next three months, Memphis Depay has to do most of the heavy lifting for the legendary club.
For Aguero, repeated bouts of injuries raise concerns about his long-term health, especially with Pep Guardiola urging the striker to put his health before football before.
He might be forced to cut short his productive career early on if the condition persists and it will be a major setback both for the club and for fans of the game.