Wolves highlight new Erling Haaland problem Man City need to address

Manchester City striker Erling Haaland suffered a quiet game thanks to Wolverhampton Wanderers’ masterplan

Very rarely since signing for Manchester City has Erling Haaland suffered frustrating matches.

Yes, there have been occasions when he has been quiet and not had many sights at goal but he always seemed to have the last laugh. Borussia Dortmund at home last season was a perfect example of this.

His old teammates knew how to defend against him however one lapse in concentration at the back and Haaland was able to produce a moment of magic to win the game. Unfortunately, with the Blues pushing hard to avoid their first defeat of the season, the Norwegian was unable to come up with the goods.

In fact, the striker managed just one shot throughout the entirety of the clash with Wolverhampton Wanderers – a tame deflected strike which Jose Sa gathered comfortably. For those not in attendance, you may wonder how Wolves managed to complete the unthinkable.

Was it an innovative defensive approach the likes of which Gary O’Neil had spent weeks honing? No, it was rather a simple, old school tactic which many clubs do not tend to employ in this day and age.

Wolves opted to simply man-mark Haaland out of the contest. Of course this is easier said than done if the centre-back is not able to handle the 23-year-old.

But, in Craig Dawson, Wolves have a defender who was unwilling to give Haaland even a moment’s peace. The 33-year-old suffocated City’s talisman and in doing so created a problem which needs fixing.

Pep Guardiola will be aware of opponents looking to copy this tactical mindset in upcoming fixtures and City need to find a way of preventing it from happening. Employing someone like Julian Alvarez to divert some of the pressure off Haaland could be the way forward but Wolves did well to counterbalance his threat for the most part on Saturday.

Dawson’s display was a learning curve for City and no doubt Guardiola will work tirelessly to avoid his main striking threat from being hamstrung again.