Sergio Aguero went unpunished on his return to the Premier League on Saturday night after catching assistant referee Sian Massey-Ellis in the shoulder in the 1-0 win over Arsenal.
The Manchester City forward was discussing a throw-in decision given to Arsenal when he put his hand on his shoulder.
Pep Guardiola defended Aguero, insisting the striker’s action was clearly not aggressive. The town boss said: “Come on guys, Sergio is the nicest person I’ve met in my life. Look for problems in other situations, not this one.
Sergio Aguero complained to assistant referee Sian Massey-Ellis over a throw-in decision
Aguero may have been lucky enough to escape unpunished after grabbing his shoulder
But Aguero was certainly taking a chance. Chris Foy, the former Premier League referee, said: “The keywords are ‘aggressive’ and ‘confrontational’. The laws state: “It is not uncommon for players to come into contact with officials.
“As long as this is done with courtesy and not in an aggressive or confrontational manner, there is no need for a referee to act.” ”
Massey-Ellis was the subject of sexist jibes that cost presenters Andy Gray and Richard Keys their jobs at Sky Sports in 2011.
Raheem Sterling believes City’s performance benefited from Aguero’s return.
Guardiola has come out on Aguero’s defense, claiming the Argentine is the ‘nicest person’ he has ever met
The England winger must have played like a false nine this season with Aguero and Gabriel Jesus missing, but the Argentine’s first action since his knee injury in June has given City better form.
“Having a flawless striker to partner with was very good again,” said Sterling, who missed the recent England internationals to quell a hamstring complaint.
“Sometimes in the first half Sergio and I got in our pockets. It was an important result for us. We lost points from the start and had to start our season.
The victory was a relief for Guardiola who saw his side beaten 5-2 by Leicester in their last home game.
“The desire to win was impressive against a team like Arsenal who have it all to be a contender to win the league,” he said.
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has been wronged. VAR didn’t look at a high boot from Kyle Walker as he stepped over a corner. “I asked the referee to look him back,” he said. “I don’t think they checked it out and I’m disappointed.
The game was Aguero’s first of the season for Manchester City following an injury dismissal
Sky Sports specialist Micah Richards said the incident “didn’t look good” on his former teammate
In Sky Sport’s post-game coverage, former Aguero teammate Micah Richards said the incident “didn’t look good.
He said, “He didn’t really need to do it. You have to respect the officials. I think she is handling the situation very well.
“He will know better. I don’t think we have to go too far, but he shouldn’t hit the officials, that doesn’t look good.