Following a disappointing debut in a Manchester City uniform, Erling Haaland silenced the critics with a much better outing in the Citizens' first Premier League game of the season. On Sunday, the Norwegian bagged a brace to help his side beat West Ham 2-0.
It was certainly a way to bounce back for the 22-year-old striker, whose lackluster performance in the Community Shield loss to Liverpool a week before took many by surprise. Haaland's Premier League debut, on the other hand, is certainly the kind of display people expect to see this season.
Having made a $66m move from Dortmund this summer, many believe he could be the missing piece Pep Guardiola needs to deliver his first UEFA Champions League trophy in Manchester. Though that remains to be seen, the Spanish coach has already dared to liken the popular striker to one of his former proteges, Lionel Messi.
Pep Guardiola sees Lionel Messi mentality in Erling Haaland
Even after scoring a double to secure City's first win of the season, Haaland suggested he was still disappointed not to make it a hat-trick. Guardiola later said he liked that competitive nature, revealing that it reminds him of Messi during his time at the helm of FC Barcelona.
“That’s good, I like it. I was fortunate as manager to be with Messi and when he scored two, he wanted three and when scored three, he wanted four," Guardiola said in a press conference. "The top goalscorers are never satisfied, they are always hungry and starving and want more.”
What Guardiola says is quite true, goalscorers are hardly satisfied even when they manage to find the net once or twice a game. Let alone the likes of Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo, who are used to scoring game after game.
Haaland, who recorded 85 goals in 88 appearances for Dortmund, has developed that same ambition for scoring. The desire to keep on finding the net is the driving force behind every prolific striker, so Haaland's reaction should be a very promising sign.