Everton: 5 Things Team Must Do to Stop Sergio Aguero and Manchester City
Since the moment Aguero stepped on the pitch in the 60th minute against Swansea City, the Argentine international has netted eight times and led Manchester City to second place in the Premier League.
So far this season, Everton haven't had to play against a player with anywhere near the talent of Aguero. Manchester City are the first title-challenging side to face David Moyes' team this term.
Aguero's pace, finishing, touch and style have seen him adapt to Premier League action in a matter of minutes, and he seems impossible to stop.
But here is how Everton should go about trying.
1. Hit Him Hard
The old adage of "Let him know you're there!"
Everton's defense needs to hit Aguero hard, early and often if they want to try and knock him off his stride for the game.
Last season when Everton won 2-1 at Goodison Park, it was because they got City shaken up and City lost their cool. Moyes' men need to emulate that.
Having already played against Bolton and Wigan, Aguero has come up against some of the more robust defenses in the Premier League, and only Bolton have managed to stop him.
It was more a case of Aguero missing chances than any Owen Coyle tactical masterpiece that kept Aguero goalless that day, but if Everton can at least get Aguero angry, his temper could flare.
Either that, or he'll get annoyed and score a hat trick.
2. Try and Stop David Silva
David Silva is the life-blood of the Manchester City attack.
The Spanish international constantly wants the ball, and his passing and movement have been phenomenal so far this season.
Everton need to deploy a skin-tight man marker on Silva just like Bolton used to do with Fabrice Muamba on Steven Gerrard in his peak.
Moyes needs to tell Johnny Heitinga, Jack Rodwell and Marouane Fellaini to be disciplined and stay next to Silva wherever he is on the pitch.
Aguero isn't going to score a bunch from crosses, so if you can stop the central supply, his game will suffer.
3. Give No Space
As Swansea City learned the hard way: if you give Aguero space, he will punish you.
Everton's defenders cannot afford to back off Aguero, or he will run at them and cause them havoc.
Aguero is good enough to go around anyone. If that fails, he can pick out a strike from 30 yards to save his blushes.
If you are close to Aguero at all times, instead of being five or ten paces off him, he'll find it much more difficult to play his game.
If Phil Jagielka and Sylvain Distin back off and give Aguero a chance to run at them, he will make them pay.
Another old saying: "Attack is the best form of defense."
Everton have shown little fear against Manchester City in their recent meetings, and it has paid dividends for the Merseysiders.
Bolton have shown the way—City's defense is not as solid as some will think.
If Everton can control the midfield, as Moyes will play five to try and drown City, they may have a chance.
Divine intervention may be the best way to stop this City attack at the moment.
If you manage to stop Aguero, Edin Dzeko will score.
If you stop both of them, they'll bring on Carlos Tevez, and he will score.
If that fails, the midfield will take over.
Even though Everton have a great record against Manchester City over recent years, if we fail to boss the midfield and dictate the pace of the game, they'll score a fair few.
Get those Hail Mary's ready.