Atletico boss warns City off Aguero
Atletico Madrid coach Javier Aguirre has warned Manchester City that all the money in the world will not buy them Sergio Aguero.
The 20-year-old Argentinian striker has emerged as a top target for Mark Hughes as the City boss prepares to spend big in the January transfer window. Aguero has been a revelation in La Liga, netting 31 times in 84 appearances since joining Atletico Madrid in 2006 and has represented Argentina at senior level 14 times.
But Aguirre, who will field Aguero against City's English Premier League rivals Liverpool in Tuesday's UEFA Champions League group game at Anfield, insisted the player was staying put. Asked on Monday whether he had a message for City regarding Aguero, the former Mexico coach said: "Yes, I can give you a message.
"I know he is very happy at Atletico and he is still a very young player. For those reasons he will be staying with us for many years irrespective of how much money is on offer."
Aguero is expected to start for Atletico against Liverpool after scoring twice in a 2-0 win over Mallorca at the weekend which lifted his side to sixth spot in the table.
Meanwhile Luis Garcia believes Liverpool are stronger than the side which won the Champions League in 2005. Garcia played a pivotal role in helping Rafa Benitez's side win the European Cup for a fifth time after scoring decisive goals against Juventus and Chelsea on the road to Istanbul.
He moved to Atletico in 2007 after scoring 18 goals in 77 appearances during three years at Anfield and is guaranteed a warm reception when he steps out in front of The Kop.
"Liverpool have a lot of different players from when I was here," Garcia said. "The squad is a bit bigger and the team is very consistent. That is something that Liverpool perhaps lacked a little bit when I was here."
He added: "Fernando Torres has been a very good signing for them. When I was here, Liverpool didn't have a player who could score 20 goals in a season. That is what Torres gives the team."
Aguirre is desperate for Torres, out since 5 October because of a hamstring injury, to play against his former club. "I really hope Torres is fit to play. We want to play against a 100 per cent fully fit Torres so we can measure ourselves against a top side.
The Spanish visitors are expected to include another former Liverpool player in the shape of Florent Sinama-Pongolle. The former France international spent five years on Merseyside, scoring nine times in 63 appearances. He returns as Atletico's leading scorer this season with five goals.
Former Manchester United striker Diego Forlan is another likely starter. The Uruguay international has fond memories of Anfield having scored both United's goals in a 2-1 win in December 2002.
Liverpool and Atletico sit atop Group D with seven points each from their first three pool matches.