Sergio Agüero Could Miss Manchester Derby After Elbow Incident Mars City Win

Sergio Agüero is facing a three-game ban that would rule him out of next month’s Manchester derby after the striker appeared to elbow Winston Reid during Manchester City’s 3-1 win against West Ham United on Sunday.

Two goals from Raheem Sterling in a man-of-the-match display from the 21-year-old winger and another from Fernandinho, coming either side of a 58th-minute goal for West Ham via Michail Antonio’s header, secured a deserved victory for City – their fifth in a row under Pep Guardiola in all competitions – and one that sent them to the top of the Premier League.

But the triumph was somewhat marred by the 76th-minute incident involving Agüero and Reid and as the referee, Andre Marriner, did not book or send off Agüero, the Football Association can take retrospective action. However, if Marriner states he did see the incident and is comfortable with his original decision not to act on it, the FA may not bring a charge against Agüero.

If the Argentinian is found guilty of violent conduct he will miss not only the visit to Old Trafford a week on Saturday but also the home game against Bournemouth and the trip to Swansea City in the EFL Cup.

“I am new here so I don’t know how it works,” Guardiola said in regards to Agüero’s potential ban. “I didn’t see [the act] so I cannot comment. Hopefully nothing happens. If it happens, we accept and adapt. If we lose him, we lose him. We are going to play with 11.”

Mark Noble, the West Ham captain, claimed Reid was left speechless by the challenge. “I didn’t see it, to be honest. I didn’t know what it was about,” he said. “I know he [Reid] couldn’t talk [in the dressing room]. He said it was because he had got something in the throat.”

Asked if Agüero had elbowed Reid in the Adam’s apple, Noble said: “I know that he can’t talk in there so that must be the case.”

Slaven Bilic, the West Ham manager, said: “I did not see the Sergio Agüero incident. We were going to change the centre-half anyway to go four at the back. Winston Reid got a little injured so we took him off [a minute later].”

During the first half John Stones took a knock and the defender was taken off after 59 minutes, but Guardiola insisted he was fine. “I don’t think Stones is injured. I didn’t speak with the doctor,” he said. “I saw him tired, I saw him with problems.”

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Willy Caballero was again chosen ahead of Joe Hart with the new £17m signing Claudio Bravo watching from the stands having been signed from Barcelona on Thursday. This means the 33-year-old’s debut could come in the hostile atmosphere of the derby. “He has the personality to play everywhere,” Guardiola said of the Chilean goalkeeper. “I don’t know what will happen with the national team. When he is back here he will start to train and after I will take the decision.”

After reporting back for pre-season overweight Samir Nasri impressed in a 15‑minute cameo, his first action of the campaign. Guardiola indicated the Frenchman may stay when the transfer window closes. “Yeah, it depends on the player but he can play,” the manager said. Samir arrived overweight but after one week, 10 days, it was fantastic how he trained, how he competed. His quality is on another level but it depends on him. If you want to help us, want to stay, want to be part of something, it depends on him, not me.”

City found themselves 2-0 up inside 18 minutes thanks to Sterling’s first goal of the afternoon and Fernandinho’s header and, at that, stage, looked set to run riot. But they got a scare following Antonio’s strike before wrapping up all three points in second-half stoppage time after Sterling rounded Adrián, the West Ham goalkeeper, and rolled the ball in from a difficult angle.

Assessing City’s performance, Guardiola said: “Of course we can do it better. No doubt about that. But we are just one and a half, two months here and I didn’t expect to play in the short time in a lot of minutes. We played good first half, started better than at Stoke or Steaua Bucharest but the goal from West Ham in the first action, we didn’t concede anything before that.

“We controlled our emotions really well after that. We created many chances so we deserved to win clearly with more goals. The performance is good. We need Ilkay [Gündoğan] and [Leroy] Sané and all the guys because the guys who play today cannot play every three days. From the beginning I don’t have any complaints about the behaviour of these guys.”


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