Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Arsenal legend Thierry Henry the latest pundit to criticise Man City hitman, but excellent advice given

Harry De Cosemo
Man City star Erling Haaland, Arsenal legend Thierry Henry

Thierry Henry has sent advice to Man City ace Erling Haaland

Former Arsenal striker Thierry Henry says Erling Haaland must improve in one particular area after the Manchester City star failed to score in the 3-3 draw with Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Man City came away from their Champions League quarter-final first leg in the Spanish capital with a favourable result after goals from Bernardo Silva, Phil Foden and Josko Gvardiol. In an action-packed game, strikes from Real Madrid duo Rodrygo and Fede Valverde followed a Ruben Dias own goal.

But Henry, a pundit on the match for CBS Sports, was left frustrated by Haaland’s lack of impact having failed to find the net, and criticised his shielding of the ball from defenders.

“I always say that I’ve seen strikers not scoring but playing really well for the team away from home and doing exactly what you need to for your team away from home, or even at home,” Henry said (via the Daily Mail).

“But more often than not you judge a striker for his goals – fair enough, we already know that.

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“People can get better and I believe in that. But there is one thing that he doesn’t do ever so well, and he’s always shoulder to shoulder with the defender, so you can go like this, and get your foot around.

“But if you are like this [square on, hand on defender’s shoulder] there is no way you can get that ball now. I’ve created a distance, you can’t get the ball. Even at three-quarters you can protect the ball.

“Afterwards it’s all about your quality, but you can’t let the defender get their leg around you, or get an arm around you, you have to grab it first then dictate.”

Haaland criticised again

It is not the first time Haaland’s all round game has been scrutinised. Ex-Manchester United midfielder Roy Keane recently compared him to a League 2 player.

Despite this, Haaland remains on course to win his second successive Premier League Golden Boot, having also broken the record for the most goals in a 38-game season with 36 goals last term. His tally for all competitions this season currently stands at 30.

City remain in the hunt for a full defence of their treble, trailing Arsenal and Liverpool by a point in the Premier League and facing Chelsea in the FA Cup semi finals later this month.

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