Arsene Wenger has said that Manchester City hitman Erling Haaland shares the same mentality as Karim Benzema.
Speaking to the Independent, the Arsenal legend was explaining how out-and-out strikers have become a rare breed in today’s game.
However, Arsene Wenger believes Erling Haaland is an old-school No.9 driven to put the ball in the back of the net, much like Karim Benzema.
Arsene Wenger says Erling Haaland has the same mentality as Karim Benzema
Branded as ‘amazing’ by Ilkay Gundogan, the 23-year-old is often slated for his all-round skillset aside from scoring goals being quite limited.
So much so that a certain section of fans believe that Haaland should never win a Ballon d’Or in his career as his overall game would never merit an award given to well-rounded forwards like Messi and Ronaldo in the past.
However, Arsene Wenger seems to be a fan of the single-mindedness Erling Haaland possesses when it comes to scoring goals in the same vein as Karim Benzema.
MORE MAN CITY STORIES
“If I look at Haaland, Haaland is for me the real typical striker. He looks like he is ready for the fight, ready to be focused on only scoring goals. Like [Olivier] Giroud is a real striker in mentality, that explains why he’s still playing at 36, 36. And [Zlatan] Ibrahimovic, [Karim] Benzema, they have been educated for the fight, they have been educated to finish as well.”
Erling Haaland can improve as an all-round player but his critics are silly
Arsene Wenger is right in saying that the Karim Benzema-like mentality Erling Haaland has is what could be key to him continuing to get better and better as a striker.
While the Norwegian’s critics are right in emphasising that his all-round game needs improving, to give a No.9 stick for being one of the best pure goalscorers the game has ever seen at his age is ridiculous.
In a market where world-class strikers are a rarity, Haaland is keeping the art of goalscoring alive and to such a level that it would not be outlandish to back him to go down as the greatest frontman of all time.