- Erling Haaland is expected to be out with injury for an unknown period of time
- Sources close to Manchester City have expressed confidence that the injury is not as bad as initially feared
- Pep Guardiola's side face Liverpool immediately after the international break as they hunt down Arsenal
The news of Erling Haaland's injury couldn't have come at a worse time for Pep Guardiola.
Manchester City are chasing a treble this season and the possibility of missing their main man upfront could derail their ambitions.
There have been doubts about Haaland making the defending champions one-dimensional and more passive, but the 42 goals he has scored in all competitions speak for themselves.
Guardiola will now await further tests to determine how long the former Borussia Dortmund striker will be out after he withdrew from the Norway camp with a groin injury.
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With City fighting for honours on three fronts, including the elusive Champions League title, we take a look at the games Haaland could miss. A groin injury could take as long as six weeks to heal. Disclaimer: This is one of the worst possible scenarios.
The games Haaland would miss
If the 22-year-old were to sit out for six weeks, he'd miss the Liverpool clash on the first weekend when the Premier League resumes. Liverpool and Manchester City have often been the modern-day EPL rivalry, but Jurgen Klopp's side have faltered this season.
Liverpool have already beaten Guardiola's side twice this season and Haaland's absence complicates issues further.
A week later, they face Southampton, who have already beaten them this season in the Carabao Cup.
City vs Bayern Munich
Haaland would miss the double-legged quarterfinal tie against Bayern Munich if his injury would go for more than four weeks. There will also be the FA Cup semifinal against Sheffield United and another title decider at the Etihad when Arsenal come visiting on April 26th.
Julian Alvarez will be expected to slot in and fill the Norwegian's gap. Despite powering Argentina to the World Cup title, Alvarez still plays second fiddle to Haaland and rightly so. However, this might be his opportunity to step up.
The other option for Guardiola would be to revert to a false 9 - a formation that gave him much success last season. Phil Foden, Bernardo Silva and Kevin De Bruyne can all slot in that position.
Guardiola's hilarious Messi reference to Haaland
Sports Brief has also reported that apart from being a top and successful head coach, Pep Guardiola has often shown his hilarious side during games and in press conferences.
He displayed his witty nature at the end of Manchester City's FA quarterfinal Cup clash against Burnley at the Etihad Stadium on March 18th.
The star of the show was once again Erling Haaland, who scored another hat trick. It was his sixth hat trick of the campaign, which took his tally to 42 goals in all competitions in his maiden season in England. On Tuesday, the Norwegian scored five goals against RB Leipzig as Manchester City qualified for the Champions League Last 8.