Pep Guardiola sets out Erling Haaland ‘best form’ timeline, as debut goal sparks Man City star into life

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Pep Guardiola, Man City July 2022 Credit: PA Images
Pep Guardiola, Man City July 2022 Credit: PA Images

Pep Guardiola reckons Erling Haaland will improve throughout August when Manchester City have more time to prepare, following his debut goal.

The new signing made his first City appearance on Sunday, featuring for 45 minutes against Bayern Munich. And it did not take long for the former Borussia Dortmund marksman to score his first goal for his new club – 12 minutes in fact.

It was a classic poacher’s goal – the kind Haaland has made his name for at Dortmund. Kevin de Bruyne rolled it into Jack Grealish, who fired the ball across the box for Haaland to stretch out and tap home.

Man City manager Guardiola insisted, though, that there is a lot more to come from the Norwegian once he gets more minutes and training under his belt.

“He scored a goal, which is important. These type of goals in front of keeper – always he’s there,” Guardiola told club media.

“The first minutes, he needs more rhythm and time but already he had 45 minutes which is good for him.

“We’ll see how he reacts to the niggles that he had in the previous weeks. After we come back we have long weeks to prepare every weekend game. In those two or three weeks we will get the best form.”

Guardiola added that Haaland has been “training really well” and looks like a really nice guy” who is “down to earth”.

Guardiola was also keen to praise the striker’s fellow new signings Julian Alvarez and Kalvin Phillips, as well as the club’s younger talents.

“I was impressed with Josh [Wilson-Esbrand] and Rico [Lewis] when he played some minutes,” the manager said. “They were so intelligent, the biggest quality with the ball.”

Haaland gives Man City options

Bayern had their moments as they looked to press City in a man-to-man system.

But Guardiola claimed that Haaland‘s addition to his team’s front line gives his team another option in the face of “aggressive” opposition.

“It depends on the opponent,” the Spaniard said. “If they press like Bayern did today, they were man to man, so aggressive and so dynamic.

“We have alternative to put the ball to him. It’s another quality that he had. We didn’t practice that.”

Guardiola and City roll on

City have had a shorter pre-season schedule than other Premier League teams. Indeed, the Bayern game was only their second match ahead of the new campaign.

And their third and final test comes against Liverpool in the Community Shield next Saturday.

The encounter will be an early chance to assess how the two title favourites look ahead of the new term.

It will also be another chance for Haaland to get into better form with more goals. Liverpool have also signed an exciting young striker this summer in Darwin Nunez, who will similarly want to mark his territory.

The article Pep Guardiola sets out Erling Haaland ‘best form’ timeline, as debut goal sparks Man City star into life appeared first on Teamtalk.com.

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