Erling Haaland is City’s X-factor in Europe, says Ilkay Gundogan

Erling Haaland is City’s X-factor in Europe, says Ilkay Gundogan

In their pursuit of the coveted Champions League championship, Manchester City’s new attacker Erling Haaland may make all the difference, according to midfielder Ilkay Gundogan on Tuesday as the pair prepared to face their old club Borussia Dortmund.

After finishing as runners-up to Chelsea in the 2020–21 season, City has never won Europe’s top club championship and was eliminated by eventual champions Real Madrid at the semi-final stage last season.

Before Dortmund’s Wednesday match at the Etihad Stadium, Gundogan told reporters that Haaland’s outstanding start to his career in England may convert to success in Europe.

We hope so since having a legitimate number nine this year would really benefit us, added Gundogan. “We’ll see, and winning the Champions League is an amazing accomplishment.

“Playing in this tournament is never simple, and occasionally little nuances may determine the result.”

Since joining City in the offseason, Haaland has had an immediate impact, scoring 12 goals across all competitions, including two in his European debut for City as they defeated Sevilla 4-0 in their first match to take the lead in Group G.

The figures speak for themselves, I think. “He’s done well on the football, but his character, commitment, and attitude off it (has also been outstanding) from such a young lad,” Gundogan said. “I believe the club has acquired a great talent.

We both eagerly anticipate playing our former team since he is extremely mature and has a promising future.

Another former Dortmund player, Manuel Akanji, is reportedly a candidate to play in the match, according to City boss Pep Guardiola.

Haaland and Akanji are guys that Dortmund know better than I do, according to Guardiola, who added that. “They can benefit. They were there for a while.

“We’ll find out tomorrow whether it’s a benefit. But they are also familiar with the Dortmund players.

Aymeric Laporte, who had knee surgery, participated in training for the first time, according to Guardiola, but fellow defender Kyle Walker was absent.

»Erling Haaland is City’s X-factor in Europe, says Ilkay Gundogan«

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