EPL

Haaland has 'same mentality' as Ronaldo and Messi, says Man City team-mate Silva

By Sports Desk April 26, 2023

Erling Haaland's goalscoring feats are comparable to those of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, according to Bernardo Silva, who believes his Manchester City team-mate shares the former's hunger for goals.

Haaland has led City's push for a Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup treble this season, scoring at a remarkable rate since his arrival from Borussia Dortmund last year.

The Norwegian has hit 48 goals in 42 appearances across all competitions this campaign – already a record tally for a player representing a Premier League club. 

Haaland has averaged a goal every 67.2 minutes and converted 58.6 per cent of his Opta-defined big chances for City, leaving Silva to compare his mentality to that of his Portugal colleague Ronaldo.

"The goal figures, it's unbelievable. It's Cristiano and Messi level, that amount of goals," Silva told Arab News.

"Hopefully Erling can keep going that way because we need his goals until the last game of the season.

"He has definitely got the same mentality as Cristiano, always wanting to be in the box, always wanting to score. 

"He doesn't care if he touches the ball one or two times, when he touches it, he scores. He's just a proper striker."

Haaland's total of 54 goal contributions is the best of anyone playing in Europe's top five leagues this season, with Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe second with 42 (34 goals, eight assists).

With Ronaldo's move to Saudi Arabian side Al-Nassr likely signalling the end of his era-defining rivalry with Messi, Silva was asked whether Haaland and Mbappe could be the protagonists of a similar struggle in the future.

"Probably, yes," Silva said. "You have a few players apart from them who are doing very well, like Vinicius [Junior] as well. But it's true, those two are very young and doing very well.

"Kylian is more of a dribbler with the ball and Haaland is mainly inside the box like a proper striker, but both are very, very good at what they do. 

"It's not going to be easy to match the level that Cristiano and Messi did, but they are up there at the top."

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