Pep Guardiola admits Erling Haaland is still not back to his best after injury

Erling Haaland found the net 20 times in 14 Premier League appearances.

Pep Guardiola admitted that Erling Haaland is still not back to his best after injury despite scoring a brace in Manchester City’s three points against Leeds United.

In-form Norway striker netted two second-half goals after Rodri had given the Sky Blues the lead in first-half stoppage time and despite Pascal Struijk’s late header for the Whites, the result was never in doubt.

The former Dortmund striker has now netted 26 goals in 20 appearances for the Cityzens across all competitions, including 20 in 14 Premier League appearances.

Guardiola said: “He misses chances, but the numbers are exceptional.

“He’s an incredible threat for us and always in the right position the right time, really good.

“I think he is still not at his best because of the injury, to move his huge body is not easy for him, but as much as he can play minutes, (he) will be better.”

Guardiola said Haaland has not fully recovered from a foot injury sustained in his side’s goalless Champions League draw against his former club in October.

“I have the feeling he is not at his best,” Guardiola added. “It is a matter of time. Always an incredible threat for the opponent.

“Of course we are delighted, but that little (bit of extra) pace he had at the beginning of the season, he struggles a little bit.

“I am still more than satisfied, but the first part of the season he was sharper. He is getting better, incredible professional. He takes care of his body and mind.”

Leeds boss Jesse Marsch said: “I’m just really happy for him. In some ways watching him score is painful. I want him in a different kit.

“But when you know some of these young men and you see their qualities as people, you just want them to be their best – just not against you.

“But, my gosh, I’m happy for him. He’s such a great person and I’m really happy for him.”

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