Manchester City has received an unexpected short-term loan offer for Erling Haaland to keep the prolific Norwegian striker busy during the World Cup break. Due to Norway’s failure to qualify for Qatar, the 22-year-old will be out until after Christmas. He will, however, have the opportunity to keep his match sharpness at non-league Ashton United.
The Manchester minnows have attempted to sign one of the world’s most lethal attacking forces to help them avoid relegation from the National League North, England’s sixth tier in professional football.
Following Saturday’s defeat to Gainsborough Trinity, Ashton manager Michael Clegg hinted that the club was considering a bid for the 22-year-old.
“It just makes sense. City aren’t playing, and we want to help by keeping Erling fit. It makes more sense than him playing golf for six weeks. We think he will be a great fit for us and would slot in with our squad dynamic really well,”he stated.
Man City have yet to respond to the Robins’ approach, and it is unclear how comfortable Pep Guardiola would be allowing one of his formidable side’s pillars to sink to the bottom of the pyramid. After recently recovering from a foot injury, Haaland may be hesitant to risk another setback in the unforgiving environment of non-league as the Premier League champions fight to retain their title.
However, if the unthinkable occurs, Haaland will switch the Etihad Stadium for Hurst Cross, which is about six miles east of City’s home ground in Ashton-under-Lyne. Before the Blues return to action, Ashton United will play eight games.
Man City’s next game is against Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool in the Carabao Cup last 16 on December 19. Guardiola must then guide his team through a difficult run of Premier League games over the holiday season and into the new year.
City’s first six league games after the break include matches against Chelsea, Manchester United, and Tottenham. And the pressure is on following their shock defeat to Brentford on Saturday and Arsenal’s 2-0 victory over Wolves, which put the Gunners five points clear at the top of the table.