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Haaland ready to face Liverpool in Community Shield, Guardiola confirms


Manchester City's marquee signing Erling Haaland has just 40 minutes of pre-season action under his belt but is available to face Liverpool.
FotMob - 8 months ago

Erling Haaland is fit enough to play a part in Manchester City's Community Shield clash with Liverpool on Saturday, manager Pep Guardiola has confirmed.

The 22-year-old has played just 40 minutes of pre-season action since joining City from Borussia Dortmund earlier this transfer window.

Guardiola has been carefully managing Haaland's fitness due to the prolific striker carrying some minor niggles, but he is ready to use him against Liverpool this weekend.

"He's ready to play on Saturday, and the first impression as a guy is really good, a funny guy. He's settled really well with the team. That is important," Guardiola said.

"Apparently people think it's not one of the most important things, but it is... the good vibes in the locker room is more important than any advice or any other thing you can say.

"We try to settle good with the family, try to get to know each other in training, we can see what we want to do, what we did in previous seasons. The quality will do the rest."

Haaland scored 86 goals in 89 appearances in all competitions for Dortmund – only Robert Lewandowski (122) and Kylian Mbappe (89) scored more times among players from Europe's top five leagues across that period.

The Norway international required just 12 minutes to get off the mark in his City debut with the winner against Bayern Munich last week, and Guardiola is happy with the former Salzburg striker's condition.

"He feels good. When I spoke with him over the last days, he feels a little bit [of niggles], but he can train and move. At the end of August, he will be better than now," Guardiola said.

"Now we have one game a week, with more training. After that, we start the crazy schedule – three days, four days.

"I think for Liverpool and ourselves I think we arrive at this competition a little early, but the opportunity to play the Community Shield is always too early. We have to adapt."