Erling Haaland

Roy Keane claimed Haaland’s “general play” was similar to that of a “League Two player”.

Man City boss Pep Guardiola is not happy with the statement of  Roy Keane who criticised Erling Haaland. The Norway international joined City from Borussia Dortmund in the summer of 2022 but looked slightly dull this season.

Haaland was instrumental last season and helped his club to win the treble, scoring 52 goals in 53 competitive matches. He has scored 29 goals in 35 appearances, including 18 goals in 24 Premier League outings.

The former Manchester United captain claimed Haaland’s “general play” was similar to that of a “League Two player”.

Guardiola spoke to reporters when asked about Keane’s comments ahead of clash with Aston Villa, “I do not agree with him,”

“It’s like I said: ‘He’s a manager for the second or third league – I don’t think so.’ He’s the best striker in the world and helped us to win what we won last season, and the reason why we don’t create many chances is not because of Erling.

“We played an exceptional game against Arsenal. I reviewed it, we just missed more people in the final third, maybe for the quality and different skills we have.”

“I’m surprised this came from a former player,” Guardiola added. “From journalists, I can understand, never been on the pitch but former players is always a surprise.

“It’s like the referees when they retire they criticise the referees. How difficult is that business for the players? It always surprises me. Their memory disappears quickly. The problems the players have, they had. They missed a thousand, million times, and they were hurt when they were criticised by the former players.

“But today is what it is. We have to accept it and move forward. I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future but I’m not going to criticise my colleagues when I retire. ‘Should be this, should be that, could do that’ – I could do it now, and I don’t do it. But everyone has to live for something.

“Players have to accept it, it’s the job. If you don’t want to accept it you have to do another job. When you’re this public figure you have to accept it.”

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