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Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson has defended teammate Erling Haaland in the lead-up to the club’s Champions League clash with RB Leipzig, claiming that the suggestion that the Norwegian only scores easy goals is a “lie”.
City are gearing up to renew their latest assault for continental silverware and Pep Guardiola’s troops continue their quest for the Holy Grail when they travel to take on dangerous German outfit RB Leipzig in the Champions League’s Round of 16 first-leg on Wednesday.
Ahead of the action, Brazilian stopper Ederson spoke with the UEFA Champions League’s official website about several topics, including his prolific comrade, Erling Haaland.
Ederson praises Haaland’s impact
Erling Haaland has scored goal after goal for Manchester City since his switch to the club from Borussia Dortmund last year, however, more and more observers have suggested that the Cityzens might be a worse team overall with the Norwegian international as their spearhead, hinting that the 22-year-old doesn’t contribute enough in build-up phases of play.
It has also been proposed by some critics, that Haaland is a bit of a tap-in merchant and that he needs chances to be presented on a plate to impact the scoresheet.
However, Ederson has leapt to Haaland’s defence, saying: “Many people say most of the goals he scores are easy – but that is a lie. It’s his positioning – that’s his best ability.
“He doesn’t score easy goals; he positions himself very well. I hope he continues to score many goals, making us happy and we’ll keep working together for all the titles.”
How did Haaland miss this…
— Football Transfers (@Transfersdotcom) February 19, 2023
Ederson compares Haaland to Gabriel Jesus
Manchester City allowed Brazilian hotshot Gabriel Jesus to join Premier League title rivals Arsenal last summer shortly after they confirmed the capture of Erling Haaland from Dortmund, and Ederson discussed the differences in styles between the two forwards during his interview with UEFA, saying:
“When he arrived, we said he (Haaland) was going to score a lot – and that’s been happening. He is a brilliant goalscorer, he always looks to score and help the team.
“He is the striker we needed, because in comparison to Gabriel [Jesus], they are different players: Gabi likes to come in from out wide, he is stronger and more versatile; Haaland plays more centrally, looking to get into the box, he is a target in the area.
“That has been the major difference. When you get into the final third you have someone who will always be in the area.”
Haaland’s incredible Champions League record
Erling Haaland has already notched an exceptional 26 goals in 23 Premier League appearances in his maiden Premier League campaign for City, while his goal-getting record in the Champions League is also better than a goal per game (five in four).
The ex-Molde youngster has a real affinity for scoring in Europe’s premier club competition and since making his UCL debut for RB Salzburg in August 2018, Haaland has scored an immense 28 times in just 23 runouts in the tournament, for the Austrians, Dortmund and Manchester City.
Haaland, who scored six times against RB Leipzig during his time in Germany with Borussia Dortmund, would love to add to his superb tally at Die Roten Bullen’s expense on Wednesday.