WITH another stunning hat-trick Sergio Aguero further cemented his place in English footballing legend.
For me, the greatest foreign player ever to come to our shores.
I have made the assertion on Twitter before and did so again after his destruction of Chelsea yesterday with his second hat-trick in consecutive home games.
Of course it is a statement liked by the blue side of Manchester, causes outrage in the red and no little disdain from North London where Thierry Henry ruled.
There are arguments for a number of players and understandably Manchester United fans will hold up Eric Cantona and Cristiano Ronaldo as contenders for the number one spot.
Cantona’s arrival at Old Trafford in December 1992 was undoubtedly a catalyst for that first Premier League success and put them on the road to domination.
He is rightly revered for his five years at Old Trafford during which time Ferguson was forging a trophy-winning machine.
The Stretford End still sings his name as they do about Ronaldo.
He was at United for six years but it was the final three where he really made his name.
Let us not forget, however, that it was really for three seasons, three spectacular season yes, but three.
He did not arrive a world beater. Sir Alex Ferguson turned him into one and then at the very peak of his powers he was gone.
Henry’s statistics in eight years at Arsenal are truly staggering with 226 goals in 369 appearances from 1999 to 2007.
He came into a side that had already tasted Premier League success and helped them to two more.
I would put another Arsenal player in my top five: Dennis Bergkamp.
He did things on the fields of English football that made you gasp.
That juggle and finish at Filbert Street, the bamboozling turn and strike at St James’ Park which had you watching time and again to work out how he did it.
So why in this exalted company does Aguero come out as my number one?
It is not just the fact that he provided the most dramatic moment in any league in the world ever with his last-gasp goal against QPR in 2012.
Although let us linger on that for a moment, the way he played the ball into Mario Balotelli and ran on to the return.
A striker with less poise would have hit it then, in a panic and hope, but he took one more vital touch to give him that extra bit of space he needed and walloped the ball home.
It was a moment that encapsulated his goalscoring genius.
When he arrived from Atletico Madrid in 2011, Manchester City were still searching for that first title since 1968.
They had finally got their first trophy in 35 years with the FA Cup the previous season but they needed that title.
They needed somebody like Aguero and he didn’t disappoint. He was the reasons they won it and without him they simply would not.
His level of consistency has been astonishing.
It is 222 goals now in 322 games as City’s all-time leading goalscorer.
He has 20 or more goals in seven of his eight seasons at the club.
In four of them he has scored 30 or more but you might as well make that five as he currently has 23 this term.
Perhaps because there is no fuss or fanfare around him that sometimes he goes under the radar when people are considering their very best.
Aguero just gets on with it and does it season after season.
At City there has been big money, there have been big managers and other star players around him.
But quite simply without Aguero, City would not be the City they have become over the last eight years.
While Cantona kick-started United I believe they would still have gone on to great success in the nineties.
Ronaldo shone brightly on these shores but for all too short a space of time.
Arsenal had a winning mentality from their first Premier League title so although Henry’s scoring was phenomenal, he arrived into a side that had already tasted success two seasons earlier. They were there.
Aguero lifted City up.
Yes it could not be done without the Abu Dhabi money, but you still have to do it on the pitch which is why he is the main reason City are what they are today.
You can pick holes in all the arguments and there is no right answer, but as ever in football it’s a great debate.