Erling Haaland is ready to tear “a lot of great defenders in England” apart, claims fellow countryman Tore Andre Flo, with Manchester City expected to enjoy an immediate return on a £51 million ($61m) investment in a “perfect fit” for their system.
Pep Guardiola has often fielded sides without a central striker during his reign at the Etihad Stadium, but another prolific No.9 has been added to his ranks ahead of the 2022-23 campaign.
Haaland’s arrival appears to have made the Premier League champions even stronger, on the back of four title triumphs in the space of five years, and Flo believes a highly-rated 21-year-old will have opponents running scared in the English top-flight.
Will Erling Haaland be a success at Man City?
Former Chelsea frontman Flo, who won 76 caps for Norway in his playing days, has told The Sun of the impact Haaland can make with City: “No matter how big the game or how much pressure, he has coped.
“There are a lot of great defenders in England — but even they will find it very hard to stop him.”
“Of course there will be a lot of pressure on him at City — but don’t forget he will be playing with a lot more quality around him as well. It just seems to be the perfect fit for both.
“With the type of players he’ll be playing with and the way he scores his goals, they just really look made for each other.
“City put a lot of low balls to the far post and, if you’re a natural goalscorer, that’s what you dream of. He will get on the end of so many of them.
“He’s so sharp at getting in front of defenders, first to so many crosses. High or low, he doesn’t care, he just gets on the end of them and usually scores — he really strikes the ball so cleanly.”
How can Man City bring the best out of Haaland?
Guardiola is going to have to tinker with his tactical plans slightly in order to incorporate Haaland, but manager and player are considered to be wise enough to make a potentially devastating partnership work.
A highly-rated forward has endured his fair share of injury problems in recent times, but the hope is that those have been left in the past while a timely break from domestic action will be enjoyed when the World Cup finals – without Norway being involved – are taken in between November 21 and December 18.
Flo sees benefits to that, adding: “Missing out on the finals is obviously a massive disappointment to Erling, but that could be a huge advantage to City.
“It gives him an extra month or so to get to know his new club and to work with boss Pep Guardiola. And, of course, to be fitter and fresher than coming back from a very intense tournament.”