Agüero in 2020
6 April 2021 - Manchester City

A Mancunian farewell

Manchester City
Hannah Watts

On a night when he didn’t touch a single blade of grass on the Etihad pitch, it is odd that the only player on my mind during last night’s quarter-final fixture was Sergio Agüero. Since the news broke of his forthcoming summer departure, it has been impossible to ignore the air of finality surrounding every game that has followed. Yesterday was his last quarter-final at the Etihad; the reverse fixture next week will be his last quarter-final at an away venue. With every appearance, Agüero’s time with Manchester City ticks away, and the urgency to chase down that elusive trophy is almost heightened by the fact that one of these games will be his last with the team.

I find myself thinking back to those enigmatic European nights with him in tow: his magical hat-trick against Bayern in 2014; breathing hope into our campaign and breaking City’s all-time top-scoring record with his 178th against Napoli back in 2017. Even on nights that ended in heartbreak, such as the defeat against Spurs a few years ago, Agüero was still on the tip of everyone’s tongue as they pondered whether his missed penalty in the first leg was the moment that could have turned the tide.

In recent times, Agüero has become an essential figure in any Champion’s League campaign; the sight of his figure blitzing from end to end of the pitch is a comforting and welcome one. So, knowing that we are approaching a time when he just won’t be there is odd. Like Wednesday night: though the team put together a successful (albeit slightly shaky) performance, I couldn’t help but notice his burning absence. I was left wondering whether he would have finished those chances others had missed, or if his clinical dominance would have helped the team towards a more assertive performance.

In all of this, one thing is very clear: Sergio Agüero is irreplaceable. As he goes, it gives a new wave of talent such as Ferran Torres, Phil Foden and even Gabriel Jesus the chance to carve their own names into City folklore. They can never be Agüero, but they could be the next great goal-scorer. The bright blue sky is the limit.

Our Champions Journalist fan reporter:
Hannah Watts
Much to the dismay of her Wolves-supporting family, Hannah became hooked by Manchester City right from the start of her exposure to football, with centre-back John Stones her idea of the perfect defender and always the player she has printed on the back of her replica shirts. The club rewarded her loyalty in the ‘Fourmidables’ season of 2018/19, when she was present at Wembley Stadium to watch City win the FA Cup final 6-0 against Watford and complete an unprecedented clean sweep of the four domestic trophies on offer.
About Champions Journalist fan reporters: These blogs have been written by winners of our annual Champions Journalist competition as well as a selection of editors from various fan page accounts. Together they offer their unique insights from the group stages all the way to the final.
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With thanks to our Champions Journalist winner
Hannah Watts
Champions Journalist is an annual competition that gives fans a chance to write about their club for Champions Journal.