‘Respect’ – Ferdinand pens tribute to Aguero & says he can’t hate Man City star despite snatching title in 2012

The Argentine confirmed his exit from the Etihad Stadium earlier this week, bringing down the curtain on a glittering decade-long stay

Rio Ferdinand has hailed Sergio Aguero as “one of the best Premier League strikers of all time” and is still full of admiration for the Argentine despite his infamous goal costing Manchester United the title in 2012.

Aguero confirmed his exit from the Etihad Stadium at the end of the current campaign earlier this week, bringing down the curtain on a glittering decade-long stay that has been littered with trophies.

Indeed, his sensational last-minute winner against QPR in 2012 handed Roberto Mancini’s team the Premier League title at the expense of rivals United but that didn’t stop Ferdinand praising the 32-year-old.

What has Ferdinand said?

Ferdinand wrote on Instagram: “Agueroooooooooooo! This name, this goal, this moment still hits me at times when I least expect it like a bolt out the blue!

“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.

“[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 PL trophy from under my nose but respect when respect is due! Good luck for the future.”

Aguero’s legacy

The Argentine’s last-gasp strike against QPR brought home a first top-flight title for City since 1968 and although injuries have held back Aguero’s progress in recent years, his contribution to the club has been invaluable.

A four-time Premier League winner, he has also played a crucial role in five Carabao Cup victories and, two seasons ago, helped City to a domestic treble when he finally got his hands on the FA Cup.

European success has eluded the former Atletico Madrid striker thus far, although Pep Guardiola’s side will have a chance of winning the Champions League this season, with Borussia Dortmund up next at the quarter-final stage.

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