According to Pep Guardiola, Sergio Aguero will require a “few weeks” to be able to return to action after a season interrupted by illness and injury.
Since October, the City striker has not started a game but was set to be in the starting line-up for the January 10 FA Cup clash with Birmingham City.
Since coming into touch with someone who tested positive for Covid-19, however, he was forced to isolate himself before getting the virus himself.
Aguero confessed to suffering from symptoms and, after returning to the Etihad Campus for fitness work after being given the all-clear, the Argentine is yet to join his team-mates on the pitch.
He’s still not training on the field,” Guardiola said on Wednesday night ahead of City’s clash with Burnley. “He started moving a little yesterday. He’s going to take a few weeks to come back.
“But this is the most important thing, he is negative. He’s healthy again and he’s going to come back now. We need to have him back as the top scorer.”
Aguero, who missed the beginning of the season after knee surgery in the summer, along with Kevin De Bruyne and Nathan Ake, would probably skip the trip to Turf Moor, with the latter still working his way back to full fitness.
Aguero is also set to skip the big title-chasing game at Anfield on Sunday with Liverpool.
But before that, after a perfect January when Guardiola’s side set a new record for most wins in a calendar month – nine wins in all competitions, City are looking to extend their 12-game winning streak.
Saturday’s 1-0 victory over Sheffield United also took the former boss of Barcelona and Bayern Munich to a historic total of 500 victories in his managerial career, but Guardiola put his record down to his players.
The players are good, the clubs I was in were good, that’s the only explanation,” he said.
‘Both sportsmen and athletes tend to win rather than lose. When you win, you live better. People tell you to win a lot, you have to be exhausted. It’s the complete opposite. It’s so addictive when you win. You want to win again, and again, and again. From there, it comes. You might think it’s enough when you win titles, but no, no, you want more. From there it comes. To beat the opponent.’