Haaland poses a greater challenge to defend against than Mbappe, admits Nagelsmann

    Julian Nagelsmann is excited about the opportunity to take on Manchester City and Erling Haaland in the Champions League, believing the Norwegian striker could be an even stronger opponent than Kylian Mbappe.

    Bayern Munich ruled out Mbappe and Lionel Messi from the tournament when they beat Paris Saint-Germain in the round of 16 before meeting City in the quarter-finals on Friday.

    If they advance again, Bayern will face Real Madrid or Chelsea in the semi-finals, who have already faced Inter, Barcelona and PSG in this season’s Champions League.

    “I think it’s a very good draw, a difficult draw, but I think if you win the title at the end you won’t like to hear that we got lucky with our draws,” Nagelsmann said at a press conference before the Bayern match. in the Bundesliga. with Bayer Leverkusen.

    “We want to win and do it by beating big teams. We had PSG, we had Inter and Barcelona in the group stage, so now City, then Real Madrid or Chelsea, and then maybe Italy’s opponent in the final, that’s would be a triumph that would certainly send a big signal to everyone.

    “It’s going to be tough, we know that… we’ll prepare well and I think everyone’s looking forward to it.”

    Bayern will need to deal with former Borussia Dortmund striker Haaland better than RB Leipzig, who have lost five to him in the second leg of their last 16 matches at the Etihad Stadium.

    “He’s a terrific player, he’s got great ability… he’s probably a little better physically than Mbappe and certainly comparable in pace,” Nagelsmann said. “He’s got a big heart when he’s running, he’s hard to defend against, but we also have a couple of strong attacking players.”

    The 35-year-old is also a fan of City boss and former Bayern manager Josep Guardiola, but said he doesn’t copy his ideas to the Spaniard or any other manager.

    “I saw a lot of games when he was at Barcelona and also at Bayern and City,” Nagelsmann said. “I never copied anything from him, I never analyzed or copied anything from any other coach.

    “Pep’s teams are always a pleasure to watch, he always has a good idea to play football. [City] We have a very balanced team.”

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