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Pep Guardiola hits back at Roy Keane over his Erling Haaland comment

Pep Guardiola hits back at Roy Keane over his Erling Haaland comment

Pep Guardiola has fired back.

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has hit back at Roy Keane after the pundit described Erling Haaland as a "League Two" player.

Man City and Arsenal played out a dull goalless draw at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, a result that handed Liverpool the initiative in the Premier League title race.

While the visitors were praised for their defensive resilience, City striker Erling Haaland came under criticism for his lack of impact in the attacking third.

The 23-year-old has scored 81 goals in 88 games for City, but after Sunday's match Sky Sports pundit Roy Keane slammed his performance.

"In terms of in front of goal, he’s the best in the world," Keane said.

"But his general play for such a player is so poor. Not just today, he has to improve. He’s almost like a League Two player, that’s how I look at him. His general play, it has to improve and it will do over the next few years."

Speaking ahead of City's league clash with Aston Villa on Wednesday, Guardiola leapt to the defence of his star attacker.

"I’m not agreeing with him [Keane], absolutely not," Guardiola said.

"It’s like he said: 'he’s a manager for the second or third league'. I don’t think so.

"He [Haaland] is the best striker in the world and he helped us to win what we won last season.

"The reason why we didn’t create enough chances is not from Erling. We need more presence in the final third with more people.

Erling Haaland in action against Arsenal. Image: Getty
Erling Haaland in action against Arsenal. Image: Getty

"We played an exceptional game. I reviewed the game against Arsenal, but we missed more people in the final third.

"Maybe for the quality and different skillset we have, but Erling is exceptional.

"Some actions he missed, sometimes it's the managers, sometimes the opponent is really good, there are many many reasons.

"In football there is not just one reason, sometimes where you have success or you don't have success, there are many reasons, it's football, it's a team sport."

Failure to beat top four-chasing Villa on Wednesday could spell the end of City's quest to win a fourth consecutive Premier League title.

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: Manchester City, Pep Guardiola, Roy Keane, Erling Haaland, Premier League, Arsenal, Aston Villa