Pep Guardiola believes Erling Haaland could adapt his game to play in any country after a hugely impressive first season in the Premier League.
City signed Haaland from Germany’s Borussia Dortmund, while he previously played in Austria for Salzburg and his native Norway for Molde.
Although his link-up play has occasionally been criticised, Haaland’s goalscoring talent has endured across every league.
He has 27 goals already in the Premier League, closing on the single-season record of 34, but Guardiola expects it would be a similar story in any division.
Asked if Haaland was particularly well suited to playing in England, Guardiola replied: “And I would say in Germany, in Spain, in Italy, in Norway, in Congo, everywhere.
“These types of players adapt everywhere; in Africa, South America, no problem.”
Haaland’s goals tally might have been even more impressive had Kevin De Bruyne performed on a slightly more consistent basis this season.
Guardiola is sticking by the midfielder, however, acknowledging his team since arriving at City has been “Kevin and 10 more”.
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— Manchester City (@ManCity) March 10, 2023
“If Kevin is fit, he is ready,” the manager said, also confirming Kyle Walker would be available to face Crystal Palace following an incident at a club that was captured on CCTV. The England defender appeared to pull his trousers down, with Cheshire Police looking into the matter.
City will hope to beat Palace on Saturday and again apply pressure to league leaders Arsenal, who responded last week by dramatically beating Bournemouth.
That result was huge for Arsenal, but Guardiola insisted it had no adverse impact on City.
“Of course we take a look. We have to do our job and take a look,” Guardiola said. “You see it’s 0-2 and after 2-2 and after it’s six minutes extra time, they score after.
“So, it’s a pity. It would be better with a draw.
“We have to admit we are used to this for Liverpool. How many times in the last few seasons they scored in the last minutes at Anfield? How many?
“It was one of the biggest talents for Liverpool to scored in the last minute. I’ve lived it in the last three, four years, when we fought against them and battled many, many times.”
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