Sergio Aguero insists Manchester City are now good enough to beat Real Madrid as the two sides gear up for a Champions League clash at Santiago Bernabeu, next Tuesday evening.
The Premier League champions are embarking on only their second Champions League campaign, and were knocked out of last season’s competition at the group stage, along with bitter rivals Manchester United.
However, the Argentine striker – who used to play for Los Blancos’ fiercest rivals, Atletico Madrid, believes his side are now good enough to challenge the likes of Madrid and Barcelona for European glory.
“I was never on the winning side against them so let’s hope with City we can beat them,” he told the Daily Express.
“It will be difficult. Right now Real and Barca are among the best teams in the world, but we have a great team too.”
Aguero will be hoping to play a part in the clash, having been out since mid-August with a knee injury which caused him to miss Argentina’s two recent world cup qualifiers.
AC Milan CEO Adriano Galliani feels it is impossible for the Rossoneri to compete with clubs such as Barcelona and Real Madrid in the Champions League.
The 68-year-old believes the Serie A giants have what it takes to take on any other Italian team, but fears the big guns from Spain are out of their reach at this point.
“Milan can compete with any Italian team in my opinion, but things are different in Europe. Teams like Barcelona and Real Madrid are from another planet,” Galliani was quoted as saying by Corriere dello Sport.
The Milan director then went on to discuss the fitness of Alexandre Pato, and revealed that the Brazil international is set to resume match action.
“Pato? He is recovering very well. I expect him to make his comeback pretty soon.”
Milan resume match action on Saturday when they take on Atalanta.
River Plate assistant coach Gabi Amato has taken the time to praise Lionel Messi and believes the Barcelona star is on another level than anyone else, including Real Madrid attacker Cristiano Ronaldo.
Amato, who wore the jerseys of clubs such as Betis and Mallorca during his playing career, feels Ronaldo and Brazilian forward Neymar are great players as well, but insists they are nowhere near the 25-year-old.
“Messi is 100 times better. Cristiano is a great player, but I think that as Maradona said here in Argentina, Messi is different,” Amato stated to Marca.
“As Diego also said, Neymar or Cristiano can be the best players in the world, because Messi is out of this world.
“He’s an incredible player. He doesn’t touch the ball for a few minutes, then he suddenly takes two steps and scores two goals. They’re different, but Lionel’s far better.”
Messi’s netted four goals in three Liga games this term, as well as scoring twice in the Spanish Supercopa.
Former Barcelona president Joan Laporta has defended Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo in the wake of his claims that he is unhappy at the Liga champions.
The Portugal international has been accused of trying to get himself a new and improved deal by publicly declaring his unhappiness at Madrid, but Laporta feels that the attacker is under a lot of pressure and will not have realised the impact of his revelation.
“Everyone is going over the top on him. We must understand he’s under a lot of pressure and is human, because we all are affected by everything around us,” Laporta was quoted as saying by AS.
“He said something without realising the impact it would make. That’s happened to me as well in the past. The important thing is that he said it because that’s how he feels.
“Cristiano is a great professional. It’s not easy to speak up and say how you feel when you’re clearly under a lot of pressure. It’s up to Madrid to make him happy again in the best way possible.”
The 27-year-old is under contract with Madrid until June 2015.