“I replaced him so he wouldn’t beat Messi”

Manchester City beat Burnley 6-0 in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup on Saturday, in a game in which Erling Haaland scored a hat-trick. At the end of the game, Pep Guardiola was amused to replace the Norwegian again early in the game, hinting at the Champions League record that eluded him against Leipzig.

Pep Guardiola was a tenant. The Manchester City coach saw his team easily beat Burnley 6-0 in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup this Saturday. A game in which Erling Haaland again distinguished himself by scoring a hat-trick before being substituted in the 63rd minute.

A change that amused Pep Guardiola, who allowed himself to put his striker in the mixed zone: “8 goals in four days, I played eleven years in Barcelona and I scored eleven goals. He is incredible. Yes, I let him three goals throwing it away he broke Messi’s FA Cup record.”

In reference to the controversy of the quintuplets against Leipzig

The Sky Blues coach referred to the minor controversy that followed Haaland’s Champions League quintuple against Leipzig on Tuesday. Pep Guardiola had been criticized for replacing the Norwegian before scoring what would have been a historic sixth goal to protect Lionel Messi’s record.

The Argentine had such a festival in a knockout match, against Bayer Leverkusen in March 2012 (7-1), and the two men are therefore the only ones to share this record of goals in a knockout match in the Champions League . When asked about it after the game, the City coach didn’t completely deny that he was thinking about his former Barcelona protégé’s record: “I know Leo scored five goals, I remember it perfectly. It’s amazing that Erling got it in 60 minutes, Leo didn’t.” But he is very young and that must be another reason to beat Leo’s record.”

Enough to inflict a little frustration on the 22-year-old striker, who now stands at 33 goals in 25 appearances in the Champions League. A percentage much higher than that of Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi or Kylian Mbappé at the same age. Erling Haaland also told his coach when he left: “I told him I would have liked to score a double hat-trick.”

Relaunched at the post-match press conference, Guardiola had developed his thoughts: “His form is a gift to all of us, he is a great competitor. He scored five goals by touching the ball 30 or 35 times. He has five scored goals. in 60 minutes he didn’t need more. Who knows what would have happened if he had played all 90 minutes? He is an incredible guy, with an incredible mentality (…) If he had reached this record at 22 , he would have been bored in the future!”

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