Manchester (United Kingdom) (AFP) – Manchester City will be without injured leading scorer Sergio Aguero as they try to regain the advantage in the Premier League title race against struggling Cardiff on Wednesday.
A thigh injury means the Premier League’s leading marksman — he has 19 goals to his name — will sit it out with Brazil star Gabriel Jesus taking his place.
Victory over a side they thrashed 5-0 in the away fixture earlier this season would see City leapfrog Liverpool to lead the title race by a point, with both having played the same number of games.
City manager Pep Guardiola admitted Aguero faces a race to be fit for the FA Cup semi-final with Brighton on Saturday and the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final away to Tottenham next Tuesday.
“Tomorrow (Wednesday) Sergio is not able to play,” said Guardiola. “He didn’t train the last two days.
“Hopefully he can on Saturday or next Tuesday. We will see his evolution in the next few days.”
Guardiola, whose side is bidding for a historic quadruple in winning the Premier League, the FA Cup and the Champions League to add to their League Cup success already this term, has faith in Jesus being able to fill in for Aguero.
“Gabriel is ready,” said Guardiola. “He is having a good season and it is not always easy to play in this club as a striker in the same position as Sergio.
“He is fighting against one legend and an incredible top player in his best season since we have been at the club.
“When Gabriel played, he played well. Tomorrow he is going to help us and fight and score goals and create space for others.”
City might still have been top but for a late error by France’s World Cup-winning captain Hugo Lloris gifting Liverpool all three points on Sunday in a 2-1 win over Tottenham Hotspur.
“When you see that, you say ‘Ah shit’,” he said.
“But after five or ten minutes, you think it’s a nice but terrible challenge.
“Nobody said it would be easy. Nobody. We knew it and I knew it.
“Everybody is excited for what we are going to live in the next weeks.
“Let’s beat Cardiff for the main target to go back top of the league with six games left.
“After that we live again, Wembley, to achieve the one final (FA Cup) I never experienced in my life in the oldest trophy, and after that the Champions League.”
200+ Channels With Sports & News
- Starting price: $33/mo. for fubo Latino Package
- Watch Premier League, World Cup, Euro 2024 & more
- Includes NBC, USA, FOX, ESPN, CBSSN & more
Live & On Demand TV Streaming
- Price: $69.99/mo. for Entertainment package
- Watch World Cup, Euro 2024 & MLS
- Includes ESPN, ESPN2, FS1 + local channels
Many Sports & ESPN Originals
- Price: $6.99/mo. (or get ESPN+, Hulu & Disney+ for $13.99/mo.)
- Features Bundesliga, LaLiga, Championship, & more
- Also includes daily ESPN FC news & highlights show
2,000+ soccer games per year
- Price: $4.99/mo
- Features Champions League, Serie A, Europa League & NWSL
- Includes CBS, Star Trek & CBS Sports HQ
175 Premier League Games & PL TV
- Starting price: $4.99/mo. for Peacock Premium
- Watch 175 exclusive EPL games per season
- Includes Premier League TV channel plus movies, TV shows & more
- Why soccer needs better referees, not more technology
- Where to find England vs. Austria on US TV
- Hegerberg’s return for Norway sprinkles stardust on Euro 2022
- England aim to launch women’s Euro 2022 in style
- Spain star Putellas to miss Euro 2022 with knee injury
- Fantasy Premier League is live; Join our private league for 2022/23
- Euro ‘pressure a privilege’ for England captain Williamson
- Tudor promises Marseille fans he will deliver crowd-pleasing football
- PSG name ‘proud’ Galtier as new coach after sacking Pochettino
- Malacia becomes Ten Hag’s first signing at Man Utd