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Pep Guardiola has stated that Manchester City take care of Erling Haaland “24 hours” because of the 6ft 5in striker’s size and his value as an asset.
Haaland, who cost £51m in the summer, has scored 45 goals for City, a single-season record for any Premier League player. Last season he missed 16 matches for Borussia Dortmund owing to injuries, whereas this term Haaland has been unavailable for only four City matches. Guardiola explained why.
“I don’t know what he’s done in Dortmund but we take care of him 24 hours,” the manager said. “We have incredible doctors and physios, they are behind him every second of the day. It’s difficult to understand why you spend a lot of money (on a player) and then leave them – (again) I don’t know what the other clubs do.
“Today with this demanding schedule of games every three or four days we have to take care of them. It’s so demanding, with nutrition, rest, sleep, food. For the training, how many minutes they should play. There is data that says they cannot train more than 10 or 15 minutes.
“People say why was he subbed against Leipzig (last month) when he’d scored (five) goals but then he was injured after the Burnley game next, so could not play with us against Liverpool or for Norway.
“We know we have to watch him because he’s so big. The physios take care of him; he is massaged – his back, shoulders, tendons, everything. He works so much time inside the training centre – much more than on the pitch. Today in modern football, players train more behind the scenes than on the pitch.”
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