Rio Ferdinand has hit out at the Erling Haaland doubters after the Manchester City striker scored five goals against RB Leipzig.
Pep Guardiola’s side ran riot on the night as they secured a historic 7-0 victory to see them progress to the Champions League quarter-finals.
It took Haaland less than 60 minutes to score five goals and he could have had even more, had Guardiola not substituted him in the second half.
The 22-year-old is now only the third player to have scored five goals in a Champions League game as he joins Lionel Messi and Luiz Adriano with that record.
Ferdinand was full of praise for the Man City forward after the match and he hit out at the people who have doubted his impact this season.
“What Haaland is doing in football right now is astonishing,” Ferdinand said on BT Sport.
“When he’s playing like this in the team, they are absolutely dominant. He gives the feeling as long as everyone else is a 7/10 and he’s here we win.
“He brings a superpower to the team and this is already a supercharged team with exceptional talent, and there’s a hunger and desire in his play above everything else.
“Scandalously I’ve heard people say he [negatively] impacts the way this team plays. 39 goals in the season… he only makes this team better.”
Haaland now leads the way as the top scorer in the Champions League and Premier League this season. He’s also been prolific in the calendar year of 2023.
“It’s the carefree attitude that he just wants to play football and I love the fact he’s very simplistic, he doesn’t overcomplicate things,” Ferdinand adds. “He’s always taking one or two touches and running in behind.
“These are old school traits and he’s at his best when he doesn’t have to think. It’s instinctive for him.
“Most players on the pitch when the balls are in those areas are on their heels, but he’s on his toes and ready to pounce.
“This isn’t a coincidence he’s scored so many goals at the age of 22 – he’s just in the right areas again and again. There’s no coach, even Pep, one of the best if not the best in the world that can teach that.”
The 22-year-old is on track to break all sorts of goalscoring records this season and when he’s in the mood, there’s no stopping him.
Man City will host Burnley in the FA Cup next up before they return to Premier League action with a clash against Liverpool.
READ MORE: Will Erling Haaland be a decent signing when he’s adapted to Pep Guardiola?