Haaland returns for Man City as Guardiola names top scorer on bench

Erling Haaland was set for a Premier League return off the bench as he was named as a substitute for Manchester City's clash with Fulham on Saturday.

The prolific Norwegian missed last week's 1-0 win at Leicester City, as well as Wednesday's 3-1 Champions League victory over Sevilla, after suffering a foot injury.

With 17 goals in his first 11 Premier League appearances, and 22 goals across all competitions already, the former Borussia Dortmund striker has made a flying start to his time in England.

Manager Pep Guardiola was determined not to rush Haaland back, and said on Friday the 22-year-old would be assessed after a final training session before a decision was made on his involvement.

Guardiola said it was clear Haaland was "much better".

For the visit of Fulham, Guardiola judged it prudent to hand Haaland a limited role, starting instead with Julian Alvarez as his main striker, supported by the likes of Bernardo Silva, Jack Grealish and Kevin De Bruyne.

City's bench was stacked with quality for the clash with the Cottagers, with Haaland joined by players including Ruben Dias, Phil Foden and Riyad Mahrez.

Fulham, meanwhile, were without their leading scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic, with the club citing "ankle pain" as the reason for his absence.

Erling Haaland
Erling Haaland