Man City injury news – Erling Haaland latest ahead of Liverpool clash

Man City’s next six Premier League matches

Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola has been left to sweat on his top scorer for one of the biggest games of his side’s season so far as Liverpool prepare for their trip to the Etihad Stadium on Saturday. Erling Haaland withdrew from the Norway squad during the international break after coming down with a groin injury, and the signs ahead of this weekend’s showdown are bleak.

Having been through something of a dry spell in recent months, Haaland returned to his rampant best just before the international break by scoring eight goals in his last two matches – five against RB Leipzig and three against Burnley – despite being substituted well before full-time in both.

It therefore came as a blow to both City and Norway when he pulled out of qualifiers against Spain and Georgia due to a groin issue. Speaking last week, Haaland’s father, who himself played for City, painted a worrying picture.

“Manchester City has a partnership with a hospital in Barcelona so he has been there for further checks and treatment,” he told TV 2 Sport. “Now he has been here [Marbella] for a couple of days with the physio from the club.

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“Firstly, I’m not a doctor and secondly, I think [him playing against Liverpool] is ‘touch and go’, yes. 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.”

Prospects of Haaland returning in time for Saturday’s game took another hit when it emerged that he missed training on Thursday. His father has already dismissed the notion of throwing the striker ‘straight into the fight’, suggesting that Guardiola is highly likely to opt for Julian Alvarez up front instead.

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The Argentine has made a positive impression during his first season in the Premier League, although his five-goal haul pales in comparison to the 28 managed by Haaland, who has made a habit of terrorising opposition defences during his own debut campaign.

Providing Haaland does not make the squad, City will be without two key players for the Reds’ visit as Phil Foden recently underwent surgery for acute appendicitis. The 22-year-old was unavailable for England’s win over Ukraine as a result and it has already been confirmed that he will miss the Liverpool clash.

Guardiola will be desperate to set about building momentum after the international break, with Arsenal – led by his former protege Mikel Arteta – sitting eight points ahead in the race for the Premier League title.

A tie with Liverpool is not as daunting this term as it has been in seasons gone by, with Jurgen Klopp’s side in sixth and chasing down Champions League qualification, but City would lose valuable ground to the Gunners if they come away with anything other than all three points.

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