“He is one of the hardest strikers I have ever marked.”
Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has explained why he never “hated” Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero despite his famous goal against Queens Park Rangers in 2012, which denied the Red Devils the Premier League title.
Ferdinand explained that he harbours respect for Aguero “as a footballer”, which in addition to the Argentine’s “humble” character, meant that Ferdinand never felt any animosity towards Aguero despite that famous moment.
On Monday, Man City confirmed that Aguero would be leaving the club in the summer after a decade at the Etihad.
The Argentina international has established himself as one of the Premier League‘s greatest-ever foreign players during his time in Manchester.
Since his arrival from Atletico Madrid in 2011, Aguero has managed 257 goals and 73 assists in 384 appearances for the Citizens.
In addition, he has won 13 trophies with Man City, which include four Premier League titles and a domestic quadruple during the 2018-19 season.
Ferdinand on Aguero.
Ferdinand took to social media to pay a classy tribute to Aguero, with whom he has shared several on-pitch battles in the Premier League.
“Agueroooooooooooo! This name, this goal, this moment still hits me at times when I least expect it like a bolt out the blue!” Ferdinand wrote in an Instagram post.
“Our closest rivals just across the city, snatching the title from out of our hands. Absolutely floored, distraught, devastated….a whole season demolished in the final seconds of the last game.
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“(But) what I will say is that as much as I hated the outcome, I never hated or disliked Sergio for his moment like I thought I would.
“I think how humble and chilled he seems plays a big part but as much, or more, is how much I respect him as a footballer. He is one of the hardest strikers I have ever marked.
“He was direct once he had the ball. As a defender, he always had you on the edge and you had to have total concentration to make sure you knew where he was at all times.
“Rivalries put to one side for a moment, Sergio Aguero is one of the best PL strikers of all time, no doubts.
“(He) snatched the Premier League trophy from under my nose but respect when respect is due! Good luck for the future.”