Is Erling Haaland doing enough for Manchester City on current form? | OneFootball

Is Erling Haaland doing enough for Manchester City on current form? | OneFootball

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·19 April 2024

Is Erling Haaland doing enough for Manchester City on current form?

Article image:Is Erling Haaland doing enough for Manchester City on current form?

An interesting discussion has lingered since Manchester City’s UEFA Champions League exit at the hands of Real Madrid. Is Erling Haaland doing enough for Manchester City?

Following on from his spectacular debut season last campaign, this season has been a lot tougher for City’s number 9. There have been several mitigating factors that have caused a dip in form from Erling Haaland this season. A foot injury that cost him two months of the season and opposing team’s routinely double marking City’s star striker has seen his impact reduced. It has been especially evident in recent games. Real Madrid successfully nullified Haaland’s impact, which formed a key part of their Champions League quarter-final triumph over Pep Guardiola’s side.

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Erling Haaland does appear to be low on confidence. That could possibly be linked to his two month absence due to a foot injury earlier this season. It is natural for a player to need time to return to his best form after an injury layoff. Haaland has shown snippets of his best since his return from injury, but his devastating best hasn’t consistently been seen. His brace and performance against Everton in City’s 2-nil win at the Etihad in early February is arguably Haaland’s best Premier League display since he returned from injury. He also scored 5 against Luton Town in City’s 6-2 FA Cup fifth round win. That performance was probably Haaland’s best all around display of the season.

READ MORE: City player ratings from City’s heartbreaking defeat at the hands of Real Madrid.

There is also a question if Manchester City is playing to Haaland’s strengths? City’s number 9 prefers space in behind, and it seems that only Kevin De Bruyne plays Haaland through on goal when the opportunity presents itself. The other side of that equation is City’s opponents are employing a low block defensively to take that space away. Teams are happy to concede possession to Pep Guardiola’s side and keep them in front of their defence in a bid to contain the champions.

This defensive strategy also limits the space Haaland thrives on. Potentially, Haaland could drop deeper when City has possession to counter this. But this isn’t a particular strength of his game. However, it may be a part of Haaland’s game that he has to develop in a bid to counteract the fact that he is consistently double marked.

This season hasn’t been a failure by Erling Haaland. He has scored 31 goals in 39 appearances, which are still exceptional numbers. The issue has been that his impact has been reduced, especially in recent games. But given that he is only 23 years of age it is part of his development. Erling Haaland isn’t yet the finished product as a player. That is a fact that is often overlooked given how much of an impact he has had in the early stages of his career.

Esteemed Kompany host Steven Mcinerney ponders the question of is Haaland doing enough in the video below. It’s become a topic of discussion since City’s penalty shootout defeat to Real Madrid on Wednesday.

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