Erling Haaland is a doubt for Manchester City’s clash with Liverpool next weekend with the forward ‘touch and go’ to feature at the Etihad.
Haaland faces a race to be fit for the clash after withdrawing from international duty this week with a groin issue. The 22-year-old’s father, Alf-Inge, has revealed the extent of the problem that will see Haaland miss Norway’s Euro 2024 qualifiers with Spain and Georgia.
“Everything is relative. He would very much like to have played these two international matches, but now it won’t be like that,” he told TV2. “He must prioritise his health, try to get his body back in place. Based on the assumptions, he is doing well, but he is very sad.
Haaland’s father discussed the decision to withdraw from international duty and revealed that the forward travelled to Barcelona to undergo examination before continuing his rehabilitation in the Spanish town of Marbella.
“First and foremost, it is the national team that makes the decision, but they cooperate, of course,” he said. “They must have as much knowledge as possible about this and of course ask the doctors and physios at Manchester City. Then they come up with something together.
“Yes, Manchester City has a partnership with a hospital in Barcelona. He has been there for further checks and treatment. Now he has been here (Marbella) for a couple of days with the physio from the club. So he gets good follow-up.”
Haaland’s fitness will be a huge concern for City ahead of a crucial clash with Liverpool in the Premier League on April 1. Pep Guardiola’s side will kick-off against the Reds eight points behind leaders Arsenal.
“Firstly, I’m not a doctor and secondly, I think it’s ‘touch and go’, yes,” Haaland senior said on whether the club’s leading goalscorer would feature.
“You can’t just go two weeks without training and then jump right into a fight. There must be a progression there.
“They can gamble on it, but if he doesn’t get proper training with the team, then he won’t play. It is about how he responds to treatment in the next few days. He needs a lot of care.”