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Pep Guardiola slams Roy Keane for calling Erling Haaland ‘a League Two player’ | Football

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Pep Guardiola slams Roy Keane for calling Erling Haaland ‘a League Two player’ | Football

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Pep Guardiola does not agree with Roy Keane’s criticism of Erling Haaland (Photo: YouTube / Twitter)

Pep Guardiola has hit back at Roy Keane after he said Erling Haaland played ‘like a League Two player’ in Manchester City’s goalless draw with Arsenal.

Haaland put in a rare, poor performance against the Gunners last Sunday in what was a huge clash in the Premier League title race.

Victory would have seen the Citizens leapfrog their opponents but instead they remain third in the table behind Arsenal and leaders Liverpool.

Manchester United legend Keane was scathing of striker Haaland who barely got a sniff of the ball at the Etihad, saying: ‘The levels of his general play are so poor.

‘Not just today, laying stuff off, headers, whatever it might be… in front of goal he is the best in the world but his general play for such a player is so poor.

‘He is almost like a League Two player. He’s a brilliant striker but he has to improve his all-round game.’

This is not the first time Haaland’s non-goalscoring abilities have come under fire, despite the fact that he found the back of the net a record 52 times in 53 games last season as City won the treble.

Erling Haaland had an awful game against Arsenal (Photo: Getty)

And Guardiola was having none of the dissent toward his talisman when asked about Keane’s comments in his pre-match press conference ahead of City’s clash against Aston Villa on Wednesday night.

‘I am surprised it comes from former players,’ the manager said.

‘I am not agreeing with him, absolutely not. It’s like if I said he [Keane] is a manager for the second or third league.

‘The memory disappears quick. The problems the players have now, the pundits had. 

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‘The missing of chances, they missed them one thousand million times and they were hurt when they were criticised by former players.’

So far this season, the 23-year-old has scored 29 goals in 35 games, and is leading the Premier League Golden Boot race with two more goals than nearest challengers Dominic Solanke, Mohammed Salah and Ollie Watkins.

‘He’s the best striker in the world and he helped us win what we won last season,’ Guardiola added.

‘The reason we don’t create many chances is not because of Erling. We need more presence in the final third with more people. Erling is exceptional.’

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