Sergio Aguero: Another Manchester City Treble?

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In his latest blog, Stake's Global Football Ambassador Sergio Aguero gives his thoughts on the current state of football around the world, including the chances of his old side Manchester City winning the Treble for the second year in a row

Manchester City

What do you think of new Man City signing Claudio Echeverri? Could he become another Argentine City hero like yourself and Julián Álvarez?

Hopefully. He's still young but he's got the potential to become an established player in Europe.

I've seen him play for Argentina's youth squads and Claudio left a lasting impression. He's made it all the way to River Plate's main squad this season.

Echeverri has great field awareness, a solid kick, flair, a knack for assisting and scoring.

He's making it to City with even less professional experience than Julian, so he'll need more time for adaptation, but a good signing, nonetheless.

Manchester City play Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-final, how do you see that game going?

To me, the important thing is that City has reached this milestone once more.

I read recently that they're the first team in FA Cup history to reach the semifinals for six seasons in a row.

And winning the whole thing gets more and more likely the more often you do it. The game itself will be tricky.

Chelsea is in an upsurge, and they have a young, hungry team.

But City's team knows how they like to play the game and I think they'll be able to make it through.

How do you rate Manchester City’s chances of winning the Treble AGAIN this season?

Look, winning the Treble is something you really need to relish when it happens because it's insanely difficult to pull off.

If you can, you'll leave your mark in history, and making history feels amazing... and it’s no easy task.

The Premier League, the Champions League and the FA Cup are top-tier competitions, and you'd need to play perfectly to win all those tournaments in a single season.

The most important thing is to be among the contenders for those titles. If you take them home, the better.

Bruno Guimaraes has been linked with a move in the summer to City, do you think that would be a good move?

I haven't been following the trade market.

There's usually a lot of chatter in the months leading to the window and you never know how it plays out.

Bruno's style as a midfielder matches City's, that much I can say, but I wouldn't be able to tell you more than that.

Joshua Kimmich has also been linked, what would you make of that signing?

Joshua is another great player, but as I've said –– I'd rather comment when the ink is dry, rather than go off of hearsay.

Kalvin Phillips has struggled at City and now at West Ham, do you think he still has a future at the Etihad?

What a pity, would have loved to see him perform to his full potential at City.

By the end of the season, we'll know for sure, but we'll have to see his evolution on West Ham.

On March 30, City play Arsenal in a game which could determine where the Premier League title heads. What do you think the score will be in that game?

I'm ranking it one of the top encounters of the season, no doubt.

That being said, this year we have not two but three contenders for the title, and they all have challenging fixtures.

I'm confident in City's victory but it won't be a decisive match – other games will also tilt the scales.

City will also meet Real Madrid in the Champions League, what are you predicting from that quarter-final tie?

Ah, can't wait to see that one! It's become somewhat of a Champions League superclasico.

It comes a bit early at the quarterfinals, but oh well. Two of the top candidates, one to be knocked off.

Anything can happen in these types of games, we've seen as much.

A field full of the top stars of modern football, with two of the sharpest managers out there. Just like last year, would love to see City coming out ahead.

We’ve not spoken since Jurgen Klopp announced he would leave Liverpool, how good of a rival was he for you during your time at City?

Terrific manager, Klopp has certainly elevated Liverpool, allowing them to become a protagonist of the Premier League in recent years.

He's made them more aggressive, more intense in their playing style.

New players have arrived and Jurgen has managed to adapt them to this offensive mentality.

He'll be sorely missed in the Premier League... but he's made his choice, and it's up to us to respect it.

Is he a manager you would have loved to have played under?

Any great manager will teach you many valuable things. It would have been a great experience for sure.


Are Argentina favourites for the Copa América and could the USA be their closest rivals?

Argentina will always be a perennial candidate.

We are the reigning champions – of both the Copa and the World Cup.

Everyone's going to be out for the trophy, so it's surely going to be a thrilling tournament.

South American football has developed some very fine teams, so being a candidate and being favoured are two different things altogether.

Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Uruguay... Mexico is always a tough rival. And there's the United States, stronger when playing at home.

You were a team-mate of Messi's in 2008 for Argentina's last Olympic football gold. How do you see this year's team's medal prospects? And does Leo have a chance of being in Paris to get that second gold?

Olympic Games are a unique experience.

I have unforgettable memories of our run for gold. It's a different type of competition, but an intense one at that.

I was lucky enough to have a great team with Leo as the leader – seeing pictures of us back then, with the gold medal hanging around our necks... it's a rush.

I think Argentina has a very solid foundation to take on the tournament. Leo's presence (or absence) is his own choice.

He can choose his own path. But there's other professional commitments and fixtures, so it's no simple decision.

Who do you think is the greatest South American striker of all time?

Leo, no doubt... if we can call him a striker, because he's the full package. I'm not saying this for his record, his evergreen talent, or his goals... but because of the love he has for the game and his competitive instincts.

You were very vocal with criticisms on social media following the controversial calls against Independiente in the draw with Barracas Central. Do you see refereeing as a real issue now in Argentine football? And what can be done to fix it if so?

Argentina has a huge issue with how the VAR is employed, that's the core of the matter.

I keep talking about it during streams because I just can't understand why they're unable to use it effectively.

They meddle with it when there's no reason for VAR to come into play, and when it's direly needed, it's ignored.

Some games see VAR technicians using a set of criteria that is completely different from the next game's.

I think they should see how other leagues like the Premier have implemented it and take a page out of their book.

Enzo Fernandez has been linked with moves away from Chelsea, does he deserve to be playing for a club in the Champions League?

I haven't read anything on the subject. I think he's had a good season, even if the team had its ups and downs.

He's still growing. There are many new, young players, and Enzo still has a lot of good stuff to bring to Chelsea.


I was interested to read Gerard Pique's thoughts on modern football fans and the state of the game. As a colleague of his in the King's League do you agree with his analysis? Will football have to change to bring in younger audiences?

The King's League is a very different format that sees games with other types of pulls. It's nothing like traditional association football.

Experimentation and innovation should be encouraged, and I'm sure there's a mutually beneficial relation there.

But they are incomparable.

Do Real Madrid have enough to get past Manchester City in the Champions League and if not, would Mbappé be what they need to go one step further?

I've said it before. The level in which both teams are playing is super high, probably the best in Europe.

These matches are defined by the smallest of things. Both teams need to give it a full 180 minutes of pure focus –– and nowadays, it's usually a few minutes more too.

A minor slip up is paid dearly, as evidenced during the last couple of years.

We'll have to see how both teams arrive to the date of the match up, if they have any injuries on either side. It'll be a great bracket and hopefully City win.

Mbappe? Let's wait for that to happen. If it happens, that would be a major addition... but a single player doesn't make a squad.

Would a change in manager be good for Barcelona at the end of the season? Xavi seems to now be leaving the door open to staying.

I think Xavi is doing a good job.

I'm not following every single daily news item, so I'm not an expert on the subject.

But my impression is that he has managed to make the team perform very well lately, and give the most experimented players a chance to contribute, just like the newcomers like Yamal and Cubarsi have solidified too.

We'll see what happens, but as far as I know, Xavi has said he'll leave the team by the end of the season.