Pep Guardiola left Sergio Aguero out of his starting XI, and nobody was sure if it was genius or stupidity

Barcelona and Manchester City’s pairing in the Champions League group stage is one of the more intriguing stories in the world of football this season, with Barca legend Pep Guardiola returning to his old home as City boss.

And while the Catalan side are arguably the greatest side in world football at present, City have their own stellar cast: Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and Sergio Aguero are a frightening proposition for any side.

And so to the line-ups. De Bruyne – check. Sterling – check. Aguero… Sergio? Oh.

The man who’s scored six Champions League goals already this season was left on the bench.

Furthermore, he couldn’t be seen emerging with his fellow substitutes either. Very strange…

Pep’s certainly a brave man. We’re not sure City fans will have enjoyed this particular surprise, however.

What exactly is going on?

After much speculation, Pep confirmed that it was purely tactics, which leaves more questions than answers…

Although maybe he’s onto something…

Let’s see how this one pans out.


More in this Section

Andy Murray and Ivan Lendl split for second time

Watch Chapecoense celebrate avoiding relegation less than a year on from tragic plane crash

Chris Coleman expected to take over at Sunderland after leaving Wales job

Nou Camp may be temporarily closed if fans found guilty of insulting chants


Today's Stories

Carl Frampton draws on home comforts after turbulent year

Tommy Fleetwood stays in contention as Justin Rose falters on 18th

Darren Sweetnam: 'I don’t even look back now. It was definitely the right decision'

Pochettino happy with his lot: ‘I don’t care where Arsenal are’

Lifestyle

A towering achievement: Exploring Irish castles and beautiful buildings

Books that belong on the gardener's bookshelf

The domestic flash of Francis Brennan

John Wilson touring with music made with Rory Gallagher in Taste

More From The Irish Examiner