Since becoming the youngest debutant in the history of the Argentinian first division at the age of 15 years, one month and three days, Sergio Aguero has proved time and again he has a big-match temperament.
A product of the Independiente youth academy, Aguero has spent the last four seasons with Spain’s Atletico Madrid, where he has earned the devotion of the fans with his cool finishing and a fearless ability to take on and beat opposing defenders.
His breakthrough into the full national side came after his sparkling performances helped Argentina to victory at the FIFA U-20 World Cup Canada 2007, his second success in the tournament after also featuring at Netherlands 2005.
As well as pulling on the captain’s armband in Canada, Aguero finished top scorer with six goals and collected the adidas Golden Ball as the tournament’s top player. Regular appearances for La Albiceleste then followed, first under Alfio Basile and then Diego Maradona.
In 2008, he formed part of the team that won Olympic gold at Beijing, scoring two goals against Brazil in the semi-finals. And in the qualifiers for South Africa 2010 he made 12 appearances and scored four goals, making him Argentina’s joint top-scorer in the competition with Juan Roman Riquelme.
Nicknamed El Kun after a cartoon character, Aguero is also the subject of a song by Argentinian dance band Los Leales, a favourite group of his and with whom he has even appeared on stage. His son Benjamin is also the grandson of national coach Maradona.