Guardiola compares Aguero to Barca trio

The heart of the Borussia Dortmund midfield – Axel Witsel

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola believes striker Sergio Aguero is on the same level as Barcelona trio Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar in the final third of the pitch.

The Citizens returned to the winning trail on Saturday afternoon, with Aguero playing a starring role in the 4-0 victory at West Brom after netting an impressive first-half brace.

Ahead of the Champions League clash with Guardiola's former employers, Barcelona, at the Etihad on Tuesday night, the coach admits it is up to him to get the best out of the Argentina international.

"In the box, he is at that level," Guardiola told reporters. "He is one the nicest players I ever trained in my career.

"It is a pleasure for me to work with nice people and Sergio is one of the best ones by far, but to convince him he has to believe how good he is and how we need him.

"I am talking about he has to feel how important he is for us. When he is happy of course all the team is happy."

Aguero had struggled for goals prior to the clash with West Brom, failing to score in six consecutive fixtures, and Guardiola concedes the player will be key to their hopes of claiming silverware this season.

He added: "We need him. Without him we cannot achieve our target, it is impossible.

"Sergio is a special player. We have to convince him how special player he is for us. We need him a lot. When he's in that behaviour and has that hunger in that moment Sergio is decisive.

"He's a big part of the history of this club and we want to help him to become a bigger part of this fantastic club."