By George Sessions, PA
Sergio Aguero has insisted he is ready to play a part in Manchester City’s quest to reach a first Champions League final.
The club record goalscorer netted in Saturday’s 2-0 win at Crystal Palace to score for just the second time in the Premier League this season.
Aguero has struggled for fitness and form during the last 12 months and had only been selected once by Pep Guardiola since the international break, but impressed in London and is eager to feature in the Champions League semi-final second leg against Paris St Germain on Tuesday.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) April 30, 2021
“I finally played,” the 32-year-old told BT Sport. “Always I am ready, I feel good. My knee is so good. I wait for the opportunity to play, so I hope on Tuesday I can play but if I don’t, it doesn’t matter.
“I want to be with my team-mates and, of course, every player wants to play, so we will see what happens.”
A knee injury last summer ruled Aguero out of the final months of the disrupted 2019-20 campaign and even since he returned in October the Argentina international has been hit by regular fitness issues.
City announced in March the forward would bring his decade at the club to an end when his contract expires at the conclusion of this season and he will be honoured for his achievements with a statue at the Etihad Stadium.
But Aguero admitted: “When the club told me, I told them ‘I don’t want anything’ and honestly, I prefer to wait until the end. I always said it’s not for me to decide, the club decides.
“The only way is to play until the end and if the club want to do something for me, OK, thank you.”
Aguero netted his 182nd Premier League goal in the win at Crystal Palace and was praised by his manager, who hinted the club great may be required against PSG following his unused substitute role in Paris last Wednesday.
“He has shown again what he has done all his career,” Guardiola said.
“What a goal, what a player, what a man. Incredible and delighted he is back. He was many, many times injured and the last weeks he trained really well. He is another weapon we have if we need next Tuesday for our final.”
Palace had caused City problems during a tight first half, but they suffered a third straight defeat with Ferran Torres able to score two minutes after Aguero’s 57th-minute opener.
A positive for the home side was the display of young defender Tyrick Mitchell, who recently signed a new four-year contract with his boyhood club and caught the eye in his first appearance since February 22.
“We just literally want to get as high as possible, win as many matches as we can and put in good performances,” the left-back replied when asked about Palace’s aims for the remainder of the season.
“There are a lot of positives, a few negatives but that is like any season. You have ups and downs but I think this season has been a positive.”