Manchester City star Erling Haaland admits he doesn’t like talking about opponents and reveals Manchester United’s Champions League win in 2008 inspired him.
The Norway international is one of the biggest threats for Inter in the Champions League Final that will be played in Istanbul tonight, Saturday, June 10, 2023.
“I want to enjoy the moment without thinking about the past or the present. I only think about what’s about to begin,” Haaland told Gazzetta.
“I don’t like to talk about rivals, I prefer to focus on myself and my team. We face a strong team which will make life difficult for us. We must be at the top to win.”
Romelu Lukaku has recently praised Haaland, saying he can dominate football in the next ten years.
“I’ve appreciated his words, but I only think about the next game,” said the striker.
Does he feel pressure ahead of the Final?
“I would lie if I said I don’t feel the pressure. Of course, I do,” he admitted.
“Man City had won the Premier League four times in the previous five years before I came in. They already know how to do it. They are only missing the Champions League and I am here to help them and achieve something this club has never reached. I’ll give my all, winning would mean everything to me.”
Which was the first Champions League Final he watched as a kid?
“Manchester United-Chelsea in 2008. I was 8. When I saw [Man Utd] players celebrating, I thought I wanted to do the same and now we are really close.”
Haaland has had an amazing season, but only scored one goal in the last seven appearances.
“One goal in seven matches is a way to see it. Another is 52 goals and nine assists in 52 matches. It works both ways and I feel well,” argued Haaland who went on to praise Pep Guardiola.
“He is obsessed with details and I like to work with him. He wants everyone to improve and always finds the right thing to do or say.”
How does he deal with criticism?
“I don’t read everything because I think I’d go mad if I did it. I think even criticism is positive, I’ve scored almost in every game, but I am still criticised. I just smile and enjoy life.”
Haaland, 22, has scored 12 goals in 10 Champions League games this season, providing one assist. He joined the Premier League giants last summer from Borussia Dortmund for €60m and has won the English title and the FA Cup this season.