Aguero provided glowing Alvarez assessment, says former Man City defender Lescott

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Sergio Aguero has provided a glowing endorsement for Argentina compatriot Julian Alvarez after his move to Manchester City.

That is the message from former City and England defender Joleon Lescott, who expects Alvarez to become a key figure for Pep Guardiola's side in the Premier League in the coming years.

Alvarez signed a five-and-a-half-year deal with the Premier League champions from River Plate in a deal worth a reported £14million ($18.8m) back in January, before being loaned back to his former side.

The 22-year-old initially caught City's eye after 20 goals and 12 assists in 35 games in the Argentine Primera Division last year, with those 32 direct goal involvements at least six more than any other player in 2021.

He added another 11 goals in 15 league appearances in 2022 and, while it remains unclear whether Alvarez will be loaned out again, Lescott revealed the forward has the backing of City great Aguero.

"He's definitely got the quality [to perform in the Premier League]," Lescott told City's official website.

"I've seen little bits, but I've also spoken to Sergio about him briefly and he said he was a top talent. He was excited for him, which was good, so that'll be a high expectation.

"Sergio said he will score goals. He can also excite fans, Sergio said possibly more than him, not in terms of scoring but in terms of the way he plays.

"He wants to dribble a little bit more than what Sergio did, who was more 'let me score', which was great for us but a different mindset.

"But with the likes of [Gabriel] Jesus leaving, you're not going to do that if you're not replacing him with an exceptional talent as well. I'm excited for him and hopefully he gets opportunities to score."

Alvarez will provide able competition to fellow arrival Erling Haaland should the Argentine stay at the Etihad Stadium for the season.

Haaland scored 86 goals in 89 appearances during his two-and-a-half-year spell at Borussia Dortmund, a tally bettered by only Robert Lewandowski (123 in 108 games) and Kylian Mbappe (93 in 111 games) of players from Europe's top five leagues during that period.

Yet with competition aplenty within Guardiola's squad, Lescott encouraged Alvarez to seize his pre-season opportunities as opposed to settling for a back-up role behind Haaland.

"I'm sure Julian has come in and wants to play and not just come to watch Erling Haaland score goals and perform," he added.

"There's an opportunity for him to play and I'm sure he's going to back himself to do that and do well. The age of the squad is good, it helps keep everyone competitive.

"The younger lads from the City academy as well will respect what it is. They'll understand that yes, they need to perform, yes they need to train well and get themselves ready for whatever season they have."

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