Aguero injury gives Pellegrini striking puzzle

Ross McLean
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PROLIFIC Manchester City marksman Sergio Aguero is expected to be face a minimum of four weeks on the sidelines after suffering knee ligament damage during Saturday’s victory over Everton at the Etihad Stadium.

While the prognosis could have been much worse, it remains a blow to boss Manuel Pellegrini ahead of the busy Christmas schedule as Aguero is set to miss as many as six Premier League fixtures, as well as tomorrow night’s crucial Champions League fixture against Roma at the Stadio Olimpico.

A crumb of comfort for the Chilean is that none of those games, against Leicester City, Crystal Palace, West Brom, Burnley, Sunderland and Everton, are against sides currently in the top half of the table.

But following that run of fixtures City face Arsenal at the Etihad Stadium before a potentially pivotal clash in City’s bid to retain their Premier League crown against current league leaders Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Aguero has been central to City’s effort this season and stands top of the Premier League scoring charts with 14 goals, having netted 19 across all competitions.

His talismanic qualities were showcased by his Champions League hat-trick against German champions Bayern Munich, while Pellegrini is left to solve a striking conundrum if his side are to maintain their pursuit of Chelsea.

Edin Dzeko and Steven Jovetic have only six league goals between them and Pellegrini was forced to throw on unheralded Spanish forward Jose Pozo following Aguero’s injury at the weekend. Of immediate concern is City’s Champions League showdown with Roma where a score draw may be enough to secure progression to the knockout phase depending on CSKA Moscow’s result in Munich.