Everton-Manchester City Preview
Sergio Aguero's predatory instincts mean he can continue to prosper after he leaves Manchester City, says Pep Guardiola.
Aguero will bring down the curtain on a glittering decade in the Premier League with City, when the recently crowned champions host Everton on Sunday.
There is the chance for a golden farewell in next week's Champions League final against Chelsea, but Aguero will enjoy an on-field tribute after full-time this weekend, with 10,000 fans allowed in attendance.
The Argentina striker is City's all-time leading goalscorer with 258 and has more Premier League goals to his name than any overseas player.
"In five metres he is like a lion in the jungle, making steps to kill the opponents. The biggest quality he has is a unique sense of goal," said Guardiola.
"He needs the first control, two or three steps, then wow. If he plays until 35, 40, 45 he will always score a goal. When he is good in himself he still can do whatever."
Another South American star to struggle with injuries this season has been James Rodriguez, who will again miss out for Everton due to a calf problem.
The former Real Madrid playmaker has made 26 appearances in all competitions for Everton, scoring six goals and providing eight assists.
"James unfortunately is not available for the game," said Carlo Ancelotti, whose side could still sneak into Europe.
"Now he will be focused on the Copa America with the national team, I hope to have him fit next season.
"All of the players will be focused on the national team, is normal. But to say it was the Copa America on his mind before? No. James was really disappointed for the fact that he was not able to help the team in this period, really sad. What can he do?"
Manchester City - Gabriel Jesus
All eyes will understandably be on Aguero, but it is fellow forward Gabriel Jesus who may pose the greater threat, given he has scored seven Premier League goals against Everton, more than he has vs any other opponent in the competition. The Brazilian has netted a brace in his last two against the Toffees at the Etihad Stadium.
Everton - Richarlison
While Dominic Calvert-Lewin has scored 21 goals in all competitions this term, Richarlison has not had his best of campaigns, netting just seven league goals (13 in total). However, one of those came in the reverse top-flight fixture, and he headed in the winner against Wolves last time out. With the Copa America coming up, he will be determined to end the season on a high.
- Guardiola has won all four of his Premier League games on the final day of the season - no manager has a better 100 per cent win rate in such games in the competition (Chris Coleman also 4/4).
- Everton have won 11 Premier League away games this season, already their most in a single campaign in the competition. Their record for away wins in a single league campaign is 12, doing so in two different title-winning seasons in 1969-70 and 1984-85.
- This is the third time Everton have faced the Premier League champions on the final day of a campaign, with the Toffees losing the other two (vs Arsenal in 2001-02 and Manchester United in 2002-03). Everton have not won their final league game in any of the last four seasons.
- City have lost their final league game in just one of the last 12 seasons (W9 D2), losing 3-2 at home to Norwich in 2012-13.
- City have won each of their last six Premier League games against Everton, as many as they had in their previous 21 against the Toffees (D5 L10).
Updated May 21, 2021