Jesse Marsch reveals Erling Haaland ‘texted me when schedule came out’ but warns Leeds fans he expects his former player at RB Salzburg to ’cause trouble for us’ when the Whites host Man City on December 28
Leeds boss Jesse Marsch admitted Erling Haaland is likely to cause trouble for the Whites when they meet on December 28 – a meeting the player ‘texted’ his former manager about when the schedule first came out.
Marsch warned supporters he was fully aware of just how dangerous the Norwegian attacker can be – having coached him at RB Salzburg – but also revealed that both Erling and Alfie Haaland were quick to support the American in his appointment.
With Norway’s failure to qualify for Qatar – something City boss Pep Guardiola believes will serve players better – top scorer Haaland is fresh into the game, although he was the subject of a hilarious Sky Sports rant at half-time advertisement.
Jesse Marsch admitted Erling Haaland is likely to cause ‘trouble’ for Leeds side on December 28
“Erling texted me as soon as the schedule was out,” Marsch said at a news conference. “I gave him permission to have a minor hamstring injury before that game (December 28).
“He was born in Leeds, his father has history here and that’s why he carries the club in his heart. When I got the job, he and his father supported me.
“We expect him to be fully ready and passionate, which causes problems for us. I know how good he is and how good he can be.’
Haaland played 22 games under Marsch at RB Salzburg, scoring 28 goals and providing seven assists
Haaland has transformed into arguably the deadliest No. 9 in world football since leaving RB Salzburg via Borussia Dortmund.
He scored an impressive 18 goals and three assists from just 13 games and has broken numerous records since his summer arrival at the German team’s Etihad.
But he has a long association with Elland Road – as Marsch alluded to – he was born in the Yorkshire town and spent time there as a child during his father’s playing days.
Yet Leeds have had a contrasting season to City so far, with Marsch’s side in 15th place, just two points clear of the bottom three, with the American so far keeping his job despite heavy criticism after a nine-match run without victory.
The Norwegian has transformed into one of the most powerful No. 9s in European football
And while he claimed he invested much of the mid-season break in his side’s fitness, he admitted it would be a tough battle against Guardiola’s City.
“At the moment it is Man City that we are focusing on. I had hoped their players would go deeper in the World Cup, but it’s so competitive,” he said.
They have a great team and the best manager in the world.
“We are not afraid of the biggest opponents. We have proven that we can compete and take points, but we need a good plan and execution to do that and we know that.’
The 22-year-old striker is the top scorer in the Premier League this season with 18 goals