Gary Neville calls Erling Haaland unfair and compares Man City striker to James Bond villain | football news

In Gary Neville’s latest podcast, the Sky Sports expert discusses why Erling Haaland sacked Manchester City to win the title, and what comes next for Leicester and Vars after their tough weekends.

Haaland is unfair – he’s like a Bond villain

There are things happening this season that aren’t smooth sailing, but I expect Manchester City to win the league, and they can comfortably win it.

Erling Haaland… Seems a bit unfair. I remember when I used to watch James Bond movies when I was younger, and there was Jaws, who was 7 feet 2 inches tall. He’s just used to picking people up and throwing them to the ground, which is a bit like when you watch Haaland against a strong centre-back. You think, “Wow, it’s unplayable – how do you handle it in the box?”.

The only thing I would say is that Haaland’s career at City will likely extend his career in general, because he’s just standing there. The way they play Manchester City, with that possession they keep, you’ll never see them expand teams, except when one or two teams are up front.

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Haaland puts a cross from Kevin De Bruyne to give City the lead over Aston Villa.

I have to say I really like him. It’s the first time we’ve caught what I think is one of the two or three best players in the world going forward. Usually these players go to Paris Saint-Germain, Real Madrid or Barcelona. Cristiano Ronaldo when he became the best player in the world is here [at Manchester United] Or maybe Thierry Henry at Arsenal, they didn’t sign up as prospects to be the best player in the world, they evolved to be that way when they were here.

But this player – you totally expect him to go on and win the Ballon d’Or and be the best player in the world. That’s exciting – this hasn’t happened for long in the Premier League.

Manchester City players celebrate taking the initiative
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Man City players celebrate taking the lead with Haaland’s goal

Malacia embodies the rebuilding of Man Utd

Well done to Eric Ten Hag. The coach must take credit for what he did that week between Brentford and Liverpool because I thought they were going to be hard to catch. Doing what he did between Brentford and Liverpool and getting the result was something special, like recovering.

and then Super SundayI think they played a really good Arsenal team. I must say, Arsenal showed their soul at Old Trafford. We’ve covered Arsenal for 10 to 12 years, walk away from it and go, ‘That’s an unstable mob, it’s a soft bunch’. They are a really good team.

Arsenal and United aren’t the two best teams in the league who have come out of what has happened to them in the past few years, but I have to say they are a lot closer to where I thought they would be a few weeks ago.

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Free to watch: Highlights from Manchester United’s victory over Arsenal in the English Premier League

Some people will say it’s the manager. Some people will say it’s the changes that have been made regarding the exclusion of Cristiano Ronaldo and Harry Maguire. do you know something? I’m going to point to the little thing I saw in the second half of the Brentford game and that was Tyrrell Malacia. Someone on the field with a bit of personality, combat and soul.

And to be fair with Lisandro Martinez who wasn’t on the field in that second half against Brentford because he was substituted. But against Liverpool there was some determination and from that, what you see is that Diogo Dalot is more aggressive. The midfielders are a little more aggressive. It only takes one person to show leadership, not necessarily the leader or the leader.

Manchester United Lisandro Martinez
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Manchester United’s Lisandro Martinez shines again against Arsenal

Man United, two or three weeks ago, I thought they were beaten. And I said if they don’t add to that team after Brentford, they’ll end up in the bottom half of the table. They wouldn’t end up in the bottom half of the table now, and they wouldn’t win the league. But they can have a better season than we all imagined. They had to spend £230 million to get there.

VAR had a terrible weekend

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Gary Neville, speaking in his podcast after Manchester United’s victory over Arsenal at Old Trafford, said that after a very bad weekend, VAR technology should improve a lot.

VAR had a very bad weekend and brought it back to the top. People who oppose it and think it destroys the spirit of the game now clearly have something to go on. It’s not going away, let’s be really clear. What they will have to do is get better at it.

We forget how often VAR is right with offsides and other decisions we take for granted. There will always be those personal people as they are tossed to the side of the field.

Now we’ve converted some of that compression to VAR so I have to say, no matter which way you look at it, we’re now talking about whether the actual game stopping was the cause. The fact that we have to look at it 20 times is something that fans don’t like. I’m a fan of finer decision making and I admire technology in sports, but what I’m not really into is giving fans a game they don’t like very much.

One of the biggest problems is that the VAR judges are sitting remotely in a studio 250 miles away on their own, completely detached from the emotion of the game and asked to make a decision. I think it’s really difficult. When I went to Stockley Park to look at VAR with Kara [Jamie Carragher] Before it’s introduced and I’m thinking: The stadium bounces, the referee on the field feels the atmosphere in the game and then they go to that very cold sterile studio 300 miles away and look at some replay?

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The Football Committee on Saturday was stunned by the number of VAR decisions made in the Premier League on Saturday

He probably has a cup of tea one minute, watches the match the next – I’m sure he’s more alert than that – but it’s not okay, that’s the thing I struggle with a little bit.

I think things have been going a lot better so it’s just a setback this weekend but it’s bad because there’s some big hype going on against it and it’s not going away, but the VAR isn’t going back either – they’re not going to overturn it.

It has run better abroad at times than it has in this country. We have to get better at it, but we’re getting better. Some of the refereeing performances I’ve seen have been pretty impressive, but the VAR was a shocking weekend. We’ve all got it.

I’m worried about Rodgers and Leicester

Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers on the touchline during their 5-2 defeat to Brighton
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Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers on the touchline during their 5-2 defeat to Brighton

I’m really worried about Lester. I have to say, earlier in the season when Kasper Schmeichel went to Nice, I thought ‘Why was that punished?’. Schmeichel is not only a very good goalkeeper, but you imagine his presence and his impact on the dressing room, the comfort he would give everyone.

You can’t replace that easily, you can’t. They’ve lost Harry Maguire before, they’ve lost N’Golo Kante, Riyad Mahrez – but I thought it was a strange thing. Then obviously Wesley Fofana has also left – I’d be worried if you were a Leicester fan.

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Free to watch: Highlights from Brighton’s win over Leicester in the Premier League

There are rumors that the director is in trouble. Brendan Rodgers did a great job there. He expected the window to get better – I think everyone did. Leicester were like Brighton: when they let the players go, they brought in other players. But you look at what’s going on over there now and I’m worried about Brendan, and I’m worried about Lester.

They’re looking into a bit of trouble and it doesn’t seem to be there. When the dressing room and coaching staff are demoralized with players leaving, it’s very difficult to recover.