Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola urges Erling Haaland to relax
Pep Guardiola has told Erling Haaland to focus more on getting his body language right than scoring goals.
The Manchester City manager admitted to being concerned about the prolific Norwegian’s demeanour since his return to action following a two-month lay-off with a foot injury.
Guardiola feels the striker has been preoccupied with adding to his remarkable goal tally and wants him to relax more.
He thinks Saturday’s victory over Everton was a good example, when Haaland had a quiet first half before netting twice late on to secure a 2-0 success.
Guardiola, speaking in Denmark at a press conference to preview Tuesday’s Champions League last-16 clash with FC Copenhagen, said: “Erling is young, playing in the most difficult position on the pitch surrounded by four or five players with minor space.
“In the first half maybe we didn’t have the special delivery players, like Kevin (De Bruyne) for example, who can find him.
“In that moment he has to be positive. When he scored a goal, he reacted, but he doesn’t need to score because he helps us for many things.
“He is defined on goals but it is not just scoring a goal. As much it’s how he is clapping, encouraging his mates and the first intense press. This is what we need from Erling.
“But we cannot forget he has been two months out, which is a lot of time for a guy who is so tall.
“Back to the dynamic is not easy. He’s a huge competitor who wants to score goals. OK, we know that, so relax.