Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero has returned to the club for treatment on his knee injury. The 24-year-old former Atletico Madrid forward was injured in City's first league game of the season - a 3-2 home win over newly promoted Southampton. Medical scans taken after the game suggested City's star striker could be out for up to a month, with the home game against Stoke City, on 15 September, fixed as a possible return date.
"I don't think Sergio will be out for long and we are hoping he will be back after the international break, which is fantastic news for him and for us," City manager Roberto Mancini explained at the time of the injury, "We were worried a couple of days ago because we feared he could be out for six months or maybe even more which would have been very bad news."
It should have been a routine (if injuries are ever that) incident, except for the surprising call-up of the player to the Argentina team for the 2014 World Cup qualifiers against Paraguay and Peru. National team coach Alejandro Sabella, incidentally, did not call on Carlos Tevez, Aguero's City team-mate, who was and still is in good physical condition.
Predictably, Mancini was furious over Sabella's decision but could do little to stop the player from travelling. FIFA regulations state an injured player can be assessed by medical staff for the national team before being declared unavailable.
"It is impossible that he can play. He needs a minimum of two weeks without training. If they insist on him having a medical over there, he will have to go, then catch the next flight back," the former Lazio manager explained to the Daily Mail, "We have to respect the rules but they're ridiculous. I will contact people in Argentina, so hopefully we can avoid any problems."
However, the situation seems to have resolved itself. Tweets from the player have confirmed he will return to Manchester and continue recovery work, ahead of Stoke City's visit.
"It seems I won't be able to make it to the Peru match - but the effort was still worth it. I'll continue the recovery work at Manchester," Aguero tweeted.
Argentina beat Paraguay 3-1 at home in the first qualifier, with goals from Barcelona's Leo Messi and the Real Madrid pair of Gonzalo Higuain and Angel di Maria. The Albicelestes will now travel to Lima to play Peru on 12 September. Sabella's team tops the qualifying table, with 13 points from 6 games.