Football: Angry Guardiola maintains silence over Aguero's future

Guardiola addresses the media during a press conference on Feb 20, 2017.
Guardiola addresses the media during a press conference on Feb 20, 2017.PHOTO: AFP

MANCHESTER, United Kingdom (AFP) - Pep Guardiola refused to speak about Sergio Aguero's long-term future with Manchester City and reacted angrily on Friday (March 3) to questions about the Argentinian's status at the Etihad Stadium.

Aguero this week challenged City to back up claims he is part of their plans and still wanted by the club, despite the impact made by recent signing Gabriel Jesus.

The teenage Brazilian took Aguero's starting place in Guardiola's line-up before suffering a broken metatarsal, allowing his rival back into the team.

After firing City into the FA Cup quarter finals with two goals in Wednesday's 5-1 win over Huddersfield Town, Aguero said: "I have three months to give my best.

"As I've always said, in June it will be seen. One thing is that the club officially say they want me here and another thing is to tell me.

"It is a breakthrough for the club to say that but I do not want to think about what will happen to my future My intention is to stay. The club can say what it wants but in June they will have to meet me."

Aguero is contracted to the summer of 2020, but his frustration stems from being in and out of Guardiola's team this season, starting just 14 of 25 Premier League games. And, asked if he was keen to keep him, Guardiola responded angrily.

"I've spoken 10 times about that. Ten times," said an exasperated City manager.

"You know my opinion. I cannot answer (in) every single press conference about Sergio Aguero.

"He is so happy, I am so happy, we are happy. Ten times I answer. No more please," the Spaniard added.

On the contract front, there are more pressing matters for City, with deals for Yaya Toure, Pablo Zabaleta, Bacary Sagna, Jesus Navas, Gael Clichy, Wilfredo Caballero all set to expire after the end of the season.

City have yet to hold talks with any of those players about new terms, but Guardiola says he is comfortable of taking the risk of other clubs pursuing them as free agents.

"Yes," said the manager, although he was unsure whether there were moves on the cards for any of them.

"I don't know because I don't speak with the managers (agents), I speak with (City's director of football) Txiki Begiristain so I don't know if they speak.

"Maybe they can speak because the manager's (agent's) job is to do that."

Meanwhile, Guardiola was hopeful that Vincent Kompany could put his injury torment behind him.

The City captain has been dogged by groin and calf injuries this season, limiting him to only 341 minutes of first-team football.

The 30-year-old defender was expected to be involved in the initial FA Cup meeting with Huddersfield Town last month, but was sidelined by a leg injury sustained in training.

But, ahead of Sunday's trip to Sunderland, Guardiola confirmed the Belgian is on the verge of making his return to the squad.

"It must not be easy for Vincent. I understand completely, because what happened was in the training session, it was nothing, it was not serious," said the City boss.

"He's in the last process, yesterday (Thursday) he trained with us, his first training session. He's ready to come back. Since the last injury (at Crystal Palace) he was one month, a month-and-a-half, fit.

"Of course he didn't play because it was my decision, but he was fit.

"Hopefully, he'll help us in the last two to three months of the season."

Guardiola is also optimistic about a return for Jesus before the end of the campaign, even though the teenage sensation's foot injury is set to rule him out for another two months.

After the Brazilian was pictured on social media playing guitar, Guardiola said: "Hopefully he come back as soon as possible, then he will become a singer. That is my dream."