Manchester City’s top scorer Sergio Aguero is unlikely to play again this season after undergoing a knee operation.
Aguero, who flew to Barcelona for consultation with Dr Ramon Cugat last week, went under the knife on Monday to address cartilage damage.
The striker made a return to the City fold during the 3-2 defeat by Manchester United 10 days ago having missed four matches with a knee injury.
He felt severe discomfort and claimed he ‘couldn’t run’ after a 23-minute substitute appearance in the Champions League against Liverpool three days later.
Pep Guardiola cast doubt over his fitness, suggesting that Ashley Young’s reckless lunge at Aguero’s ankle had caused his body stress.
Club medical staff decided Aguero would have minor surgery this week and the 29-year-old is confident the problem will easily clear in time to play for Argentina at the World Cup.
City’s season finishes on May 13 away at Southampton, while Argentina’s first game at the World Cup is against Iceland on June 16.
Aguero, meanwhile, is relieved that there will be no nerve-jangling at City this season after wrapping up the Premier League title with five games to spare.
‘This is my third title with City and it’s just a relief not to have to wait the final day this time,’ he said.
‘This season has been incredible and the football we’ve played has been the best I’ve been involved with while at the club.
‘It’s been a pleasure to play with this team and be part of everything we’ve achieved this season.’