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“He’s Here” – Pep Guardiola Confirms Erling Haaland’s Presence for Chelsea Clash Despite Huge Personal Loss

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Manchester City has a tough clash against Chelsea up next. However, Erling Haaland is facing a battle of his own. The Norwegian ace recently lost his grandmother. She passed away on the day Manchester City played against Everton, a game where Haaland’s brace made the difference. The star then started in the UCL against Copenhagen, where he “played really well,” per Pep Guardiola. And it seems he will also lead the line against Chelsea.

On February 10, after Haaland’s two goals against Everton sealed the deal for City, his grandmother’s obituary read, “Our dear mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, grandmother and great-grandmother Rasdal died peacefully today, aged 80.” With the funeral expected to happen in the coming days in Norway, Guardiola was asked about Haaland’s whereabouts ahead of the crucial Chelsea encounter. The Spanish tactician said, “He’s here.”

Bringing up the Norwegian’s performance in City’s Champions League away win despite carrying the loss of his grandmother’s passing, a reporter asked the City boss how Haaland was feeling. Guardiola explained, “Of course he’s sad, but he played really well in Copenhagen. However, he’s unsure whether Erling Haaland will be heading to Norway soon. He expressed, “I don’t know, I don’t have info, I don’t know,” when quizzed on the same.

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Seeing as the striker will have to head to Norway for the funeral, his participation against Brentford and Bournemouth is in doubt. Tone Rasdal, Haaland’s paternal grandmother, passed away at Sivdaheimen nursing home in Norway. She has four children, including Alfie Haaland, who became a soccer player for Nottingham Forest, Leeds United, and Man City. As per the Norwegian website Dagbladet, Rasdal was a teacher in a school near Bryne.

Despite the boost regarding Erling Haaland’s availability, City also has several injury issues ahead of the Chelsea game, with big questions regarding the fitness of their star performers against Copenhagen.

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Erling Haaland is at Etihad, but Manchester City is sweating over the availability of key stars

Bernardo Silva was the orchestrator for the Sky Blues against Copenhagen. He even capped off his performance with a goal. However, Guardiola had confirmed that “Bernardo took a big knock on the ankle. Hopefully, it is not a big issue, but we will see.” Although the latest reports state that the Portuguese midfielder is back, it remains to be seen if the manager will give him playing time against Chelsea.

Moreover, winger Jack Grealish is ruled out with a groin injury. The same goes for defender Josko Gvardiol, who is out with an ankle ligament issue. However, Mateo Kovacic is also expected to be available. The midfielder was absent for ‘personal reasons,’ and he will have a point to prove against his former side at Etihad Stadium.

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Can Erling Haaland make the difference against Chelsea? Tell us your match predictions below.

Read More: Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City Blamed for ‘Not Using’ Erling Haaland Properly Despite UCL Win

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