Pep Guardiola backs Erling Haaland to bounce back after failing to find the net in City’s 4-0 win

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Pep Guardiola backs Erling Haaland to bounce back after failing to find the net in City’s 4-0 win over Bournemouth calling on his team to help find his new striker goals

  • Pep Guardiola has defended Erling Haaland after his blank against Bournemouth
  • Goals from Gundogan, De Bruyne, Foden and a Lerma OG saw City win 4-0 
  • Haaland only managed eight touches during the game and failed to score  

Pep Guardiola has praised Erling Haaland’s performance in Manchester City’s 4-0 win over Bournemouth on Saturday, despite the Norwegian not getting on the scoresheet. 

The Premier League champions made it two wins from two after last weekend’s opening day win at West Ham, with goals from Ilkay Gundogan, Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden and Jefferson Lerma own goal. 

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Yet, there was no further strike for 22-year-old Haaland, following his two goals at the London Stadium a week ago. 

Erling Haaland failed to get on the scoresheet in City’s 4-0 win over Bournemouth on Saturday

Haaland only touched the ball just eight times during the game against the Cherries back line

Haaland only touched the ball just eight times during the game against the Cherries back line

In fact, the striker only touched the ball eight times during the match, just one more than Romelu Lukaku’s record low of seven touches in a Premier League game against Crystal Palace last season. 

Haaland also completed just two passes – the lowest total for a Manchester City player under Guardiola. 

However, the City boss has leapt to the defence of his summer signing by suggesting he did the best he could against The Cherries high-line of defence. 

Pep Guardiola has backed his star striker to cope with Premier League defences this season

Pep Guardiola has backed his star striker to cope with Premier League defences this season 

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‘The most difficult job in the world is when you are a striker against a (defence) with three central midfielders, three centre-backs and you are in the middle,’ Guardiola said following the victory. 

‘We will find many of these situations but it’s a question of time. With the quality of player we have behind him (Haaland), we will find him.’ 

Haaland may not have added to his two goals against the Hammers, but he did set-up City’s first for Gundogan, although showed some frustration at Phil Foden during the game when the England man opted to go for goal rather than tee-up his team-mate. 

Phil Foden was one of the players on target as City made it two wins from two at The Etihad

Phil Foden was one of the players on target as City made it two wins from two at The Etihad 

It’s not the first time Haaland has faced questions on his possible role in the City team, doubts were raised against the City number 9 after his display in the Community Shield as Pep’s men were beaten 3-1 by Liverpool. 

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However the £51million signing quickly hit back with a brace on his Premier League debut and has the manager’s backing to do so again. 

Up next for Guardiola is a trip to St James’ Park to face Newcastle next weekend, as his side look to continue their perfect start to the season.  

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