Erling Haaland is the talk of the town in European football right now. The Norwegian striker has reached a whole new level after joining Manchester City in the summer and has helped his side enjoy a dominant start to the new season.
In just 14 appearances (across all competitions) the 22-year-old forward has scored 20 goals and provided 3 assists. He has more goal contributions than the likes of Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe, Karim Benzema and Robert Lewandowski this season.
Out of that, 15 goals have been scored just in the Premier League itself. This has helped him soar forward in the golden boot race, with the top scorer crown seemingly guaranteed to be held by him in May.
Haaland is being widely regarded as the perfect final piece in the puzzle for the Citizens, as he’s the element they needed to become a destruction machine.
The Norwegian’s finishing ability and pure striking ability are some things that City have lacked in the last few years.
While his goal-scoring heroics have made many fans go gaga, Pep Guardiola isn’t just appreciating his new center-forward for the number of goals he’s scoring.
Of course, he is delighted to have such an unreal goal machine like him in the team – as proven by his meme-like reaction to the Norwegian’s heroics in the win over FC Copenhagen in the Champions League earlier this season.
But the Spanish gaffer is also equally happy at how unselfish he is and how well he’s adapted to his new teammates in Manchester.
Speaking about the 22-year-old’s most admirable trait, Guardiola told ViaPlay: “I was surprised the most about Erling Haaland- how happy he is when his team-mate scores a goal or makes an assist.
“In training, wow, his smile when his mate scores. Normally strikers are ‘he scored, I have to score’. That is so nice.”
To be fair, Guardiola isn’t really delving too far away from the truth when discussing this particular trait about Haaland. The Norwegian striker does seem genuinely happy with his teammates when they score goals or if someone puts in a solid assist for him.
The 22-year-old isn’t only about recording crazy goal numbers, but also about enjoying the success with those around him.
That is why Haaland has already become quite popular with a number of City players, with Jack Grealish, in particular, getting along with him really well.
Going by his attitude and how he tries to mingle with all his teammates, it’s not surprising that he’s become a popular figure in the City team – only months after joining them from Borussia Dortmund.
Haaland might be a goal-scoring monster, but very respectful to his senior players at the club. His celebrations, where he can often be seen smiling from ear to ear for his teammates, aren’t fictional or made up at all.
Of course, as he stays a longer period at the Etihad Stadium, closer Haaland should get to his teammates.
But for now, the way he motivates teammates with his smart goal-scoring heroics and acts like a bro for the teammates, the 22-year-old should remain a beloved figure in the City dressing room for the long term.