Manchester City Manager Pep Guardiola Backs Erling Haaland After Thierry Henry Criticism

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Last Updated: February 22, 2023, 19:34 IST

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola (AP Image)

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola (AP Image)

Arsenal legend Henry suggested that Manchester City striker Haaland has to focus on learning what to do when his team isn’t feeding him the ball, and Guardiola came to the defence of his starman

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has dismissed Thierry Henry’s claim that his star striker Erling Haaland needs to change his game and become less predictable. While speaking on CBS Sports, Henry revealed the one piece of advice that Arsene Wenger gave to him.

“We all know that if you put the ball in the box, you feed him, you are dead. In the air, on the ground, whatever it is Haaland will score. But there is one piece of advice that Arsene Wenger gave me when I was playing: ‘What can you do when your team is not feeding you?’ We all know when Kevin De Bruyne has the ball, Kevin can find him in any way,” Thierry Henry was quoted as saying on CBS Sports.

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Henry went on to suggest that Haaland sometimes makes the same run as whoever is on the ball. He opined that this does not help Manchester City.

However, Pep Guardiola has flatly rejected the notion that Haaland needed to change his approach ahead of Manchester City’s Champions League encounter against RB Leipzig. While speaking at the pre-match press conference of the match, Guardiola said, “I would say I understand what Henry wants to say but being predictable doesn’t depend on Haaland it’s about the process. To be less predictable we need more runners when we arrive in the final third but to arrive in the final third we need the process. We have done it in the past with Oleksandr Zinchenko, Fabian Delph. I believe we can do good things with Erling as well.”

Although Erling Haaland is well on course to win the Premier League Golden Boot this season, he has still faced criticism from some quarters. Haaland’s rate of scoring has slowed down and he has scored just one goal in City’s last five games. But Haaland’s positive impact at Etihad Stadium is beyond doubt. His 32 goals in 31 appearances has brought a tremendous joy to City’s legion of fans. It will be interesting to see how the Norwegian striker fares in the high-stakes match against RB Leipzig.

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