By Daniel Feliciano

7th Sep, 2022 | 3:17pm

Scouting expert: Erling Haaland will be the difference for Manchester City in Europe

We’re delighted to welcome Football Manager’s Wolves researcher Dave Azzopardi as our exclusive columnist. Each week the scouting expert will be giving his views on the biggest talking points on Wonderkids across the UK…

Erling Haaland will “definitely” be the difference for Manchester City in the Champions League this season, according to Dave Azzopardi.

City reached the final and the semi-final in the last two seasons and opened their tournament with a 4-0 win over Sevilla this season, with the Norwegian hitman bagging a brace to take his tally to 12 goals in seven games for the club since signing.

And after coming so close in recent seasons to finally winning the Champions League for the first time, Azzopardi believes Haaland will be the difference this time around and push them towards lifting that trophy.

“Can he be the difference for Man City in Europe? I think definitely,” he told The Football Wonderkids.

“With his goalscoring record in the Premier League already, I think everyone knew that he was going to get goals but I don’t think we expected back to back hat-tricks or to start as well as he has. I certainly didn’t.

“I think City needed that. There are still pundits looking at his overall game saying he only had this amount of touches or passes, but what City have lacked is someone who is going to be in and around the box and put the ball in the back of the net. That’s exactly what Erling Haaland does.

“In the Champions League it’s going to be crucial for them. If they can keep other key players like De Bruyne fit and with Pep and his rotation they’ve got good depth.

“If they can keep everyone fresh and fit for the fixtures, Haaland is going to be the difference. I think he’s going to be a huge reason for them to push and finally win that Champions League trophy.”

In other Manchester City news, Haaland has been tipped to hit 25 Premier League goals “easily” this season