With 257 goals in 384 appearances so far, Sergio Aguero will leave Manchester City this summer as the club’s greatest ever goalscorer.
Despite Pep Guardiola‘s side comfortably leading the Premier League title race, and without much involvement from the Argentine this season, City are likely to dip into the transfer market in search of a replacement to fill his void.
And what a void it is to fill. As per Football365, he is the Premier League’s highest-ever foreign goalscorer (181), as he averages a goal every 108 minutes and he scored a goal every 91 minutes in 2019/20. He scored over 20 goals in six of his 10 seasons at City, with only Alan Shearer doing so more often (seven times). Plus, the Argentine has scored 13 hat-tricks for the club.
He won’t be easy to replace, but City will have to try. Whomever they turn to next, there will be knock-on effects on the European transfer market.
The Haaland option
The obvious candidate is Erling Haaland. The Norwegian has been an unstoppable force since bursting onto the European scene with RB Salzburg and the goals haven’t stopped coming since he joined Borussia Dortmund midway through the 2019/20 season.
With a 180 million euro price tag on his head, Haaland won’t come for cheap. His arrival at the Etihad Stadium would likely have less of an impact or domino effect as anyone else, as Dortmund tend to steer clear of signing big names from established Champions League clubs.
A Premier League domino effect
Sky Sports have suggested both Danny Ings and Harry Kane as other options and they are reporting that the former Liverpool striker is viewed very favourably at City.
Kane‘s name is perhaps the most interesting to appear. The Tottenham captain has proven himself at one of England’s bigger clubs already and has performed in the Champions League and at international level as well, finishing as top scorer at the 2018 World Cup.
His Spurs contract runs until 2024, so they’ll have to spend to sign him. He has, though, refused to commit himself to the club, and has said that “top players want to win big trophies,” which he is yet to do in North London.
A Lukaku for Aguero switch?
Outside of England, Romelu Lukaku has taken Serie A by storm since joining Inter from Manchester United and he again has shown that he’s capable of performing in England. With Inter touted as one of Aguero‘s potential destinations, the two could effectively trade places.
Lukaku has enjoyed life under Antonio Conte, though, and he is unlikely to want to leave Milan, where he has scored 42 times in 56 Serie A starts. Inter teammate Lautaro Martinez could be a more likely option for City, with him having attracted attention from Barcelona previously.
What might it mean for Messi?
An obvious name to mention is Lionel Messi, whose contract at Barcelona expires this summer and there are no clues as to where his future lies. The captain has appeared happier and more settled since Joan Laporta returned as president, but nothing has become clearer about what will happen this summer.
Messi joining City could pave the way for Aguero to land at the Camp Nou, though the Barcelona No.10’s presence has been reported as being a factor that could even pull the ex-Atletico Madrid forward to Catalonia for the two Argentines to work together.
Wherever Aguero goes, it’s likely to lead to moves of some kind elsewhere. That is, of course, unless Guardiola is happy to continue as he has this season, using either Gabriel Jesus or even Kevin de Bruyne in place of the Argentine.