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Torres scores again to show there will be life after Aguero for Man City

Never mind a scoring return for Sergio Aguero, if there is one area in which Pep Guardiola needs reinforcements, it is still in the goal-poachers’ department.

Gabriel Jesus has been misfiring and when Aguero entered the fray for the final quarter of this low-key contest – and hit the target – it was only his fifth appearance of the season.

Physically, he can no longer be totally relied upon.

So maybe, just maybe, Ferran Torres could be an answer, even if only a temporary one.

The 20-year-old certainly loves a Champions League goal, his opportunistic finish early in the second half a fourth in five appearances in the competition for City.

Ferran Torres was on target yet again for Manchester City in the Champions League

And bear in mind, Torres also has a recent Nations League hat-trick to his name, against Germany no less.

Whatever role he plays in the future, Torres’ scoring contribution was one of the few things from this game that will give Guardiola food for thought.

The group win already guaranteed, the small matter of an engagement at Old Trafford at Saturday tea-time, not to mention another Premier League fixture on Tuesday, Pep would play the kids or the stiffs, right?

Wrong, of course. City do not have any stiffs. With the exception of two or three, this could actually have been labelled a reserve team yet it was obviously stacked with expensive, stellar talent.

It is easy to forget just what an embarrassment of riches Guardiola has at his disposal.

Since a Wembley performance against Iceland in mid-November that had him being officially anointed as the future of the English game, Phil Foden has played barely an hour of Premier League football.

Sergio Aguero was also on target

No matter how exaggerated Guardiola’s praise for Foden has consistently been, it remains obvious he still has reservations, if only minor ones.

Perhaps Foden has been frustrated by a relative lack of recent Premier League run-outs but he was straining to click into top form here.

He was not alone, to be fair.

It might be that if you consider yourself a relatively big name and are selected for what is, for your team, a dead rubber, the motivation is low.

It did not really matter, of course, and that is why this tired Champions League format will surely be changed some time soon.

In the meantime, City would love to win it in its current guise and with this sort of depth, they should again have a good chance.

Raheem Sterling rounded off the scoring late on

Raheem Sterling was asked to liven things up after the interval and, to some extent, he obliged.

But he was not involved with the breakthrough, Torres darting on to Valere Germain’s inadvertent assist just after the restart.

That sort of finish is the trademark of Aguero who popped in his return strike from a couple of yards before Sterling’s goal wrapped things up.

And if Aguero has to spend time out again, it could be Torres that steps up to the plate.




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