30 Aug 2022 | 22:13 | Football
Erling Haaland and Pep Guardiola (Getty Images)
Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola accepts repeatedly coming back from huge deficits is not the way to defend their Premier League title.
The champions recovered from 3-1 against Newcastle to draw 3-3 and 2-0 at home to Crystal Palace to win 4-2, mainly due to Erling Haaland’s scoring ability.
But Guardiola says scoring four or five goals a game is unsustainable.
“We have to try to avoid it,” he said ahead of Wednesday’s home game against Nottingham Forest.
“In a moment it’s good because it’s always a bad past that’s hard to come back. But now we’ve proven last season and this season we can do it, but we have to try and avoid that for real. the more the better.
“We have to manage this situation. It’s risky. One day we won’t be able to go back.”
Guardiola, asked if City have conceded more goals as they have become a more attacking team this season with Haaland in the team, replied: “It’s quite the opposite, the further away from goal, the better. you’ll be much safer.”
“We’ve proven this for six years when we’ve won the Premier League, we’ve conceded very few goals playing this way. We’ll adjust a few things, that’s normal in this period. .
“We are also scoring a lot of goals, at the same time, we are also conceding a lot and if we don’t stop it it will be very difficult. You don’t always score four or five goals to score a goal. win a match in a few months. We have to be better.”
Haaland has scored six goals in his first four games for City, including a hat-trick against Palace on Saturday.
Guardiola asked about whether he would pick his striker against Forest, but did say that Julian Alvarez would come on if Haaland were rested.
“When Erling isn’t playing, we’re going to play Julian. That’s almost certain,” he said.
“We were really impressed with his speed, his sense of goal, his work ethic, for many things.
“I know him a little bit on TV and clips, but I am amazed at how good he is. He is very humble, always positive and every training session, he gives his all. I like it. these types of players”.
“The impact in the minutes he played – he could have had a hat-trick at the Camp Nou and was involved in two goals in the last game. He has a sense of goal, we are happy. happy.
“I know people are talking about Erling and we are happy but Julian is an exceptional player.”