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Jamie Carragher on Haaland: “We Thought Types Like Him Were Extinct”

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The Liverpool legend believes that the Norwegian striker must take action if he wants to be talked about “as one of the greatest.”

Erling Braut Haaland has faced some criticism recently, as his goal-scoring has not been as frequent as we have become accustomed to. Following the Champions League match against Real Madrid, where the Norwegian did not score, criticism was once again directed at him.

Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher, who now works as an analyst for Sky Sports, addressed the “case of Haaland” in a column on Friday.

In it, the former defender writes that he does not consider Haaland a world-class player.

“He is undoubtedly one of the world’s best goal scorers, but he is still not a world-class player,” Carragher writes in The Telegraph.

He points out that class players like Luis Suárez, Thierry Henry, and Harry Kane all had qualities beyond scoring goals when they dominated in the Premier League. The three mentioned strikers were also types who brought out their best in the biggest games, according to Carragher.

The Liverpool legend further points out that in recent weeks, the Norwegian super striker has fallen short against Liverpool’s Virgil van Dijk, Arsenal’s William Saliba, and Real Madrid’s Antonio Rüdiger. Three big games where Haaland did not find the net.

“No star striker should be dominated so easily,” the former center-back believes.

He describes Haaland as a “curiosity” in modern football. Carragher praises Haaland’s ability to score goals but believes that most who have followed the striker since he joined the Premier League have noticed that he does not contribute much else.

Carragher writes that he is somewhat surprised that City manager Pep Guardiola is willing to compromise his own philosophy to make room for Haaland in the team. He believes this shows that the Spanish master manager has tremendous faith in the Norwegian.

“He does not press high, he does not win back the ball particularly well, he does not use his physicality deep in the field, and he does not combine much with other players. He is a pure ‘number 9’ – a good, old-fashioned striker – the type of striker we thought was extinct at the elite level,” he wrote.

The Liverpool hero points out that Haaland scored 52 goals last season and is likely to hit over 40 this season.

Haaland is still just 23 years old and based on previous statements, it seems that the striker and his advisors have a clear plan for his career. A future transfer to Real Madrid is often mentioned by the media.

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