Erling Haaland can break yet another record on the final day of the Premier League season – one which used to solely belong to Thierry Henry.
The Manchester City sensation recorded his 44th direct goal involvement (scoring or assisting) by setting up Phil Foden in Wednesday’s 1-1 draw away to Brighton. It was Haaland’s eighth assist of the league campaign, which combined with his outrageous tally of 36 goals puts him level with Arsenal legend Henry for total involvements.
During the Gunners’ 2002-03 season, the French forward scored 24 and provided a jaw-dropping 20 assists. While Henry’s heroics were only enough for Arsenal to finish second, Haaland and co romped to the Premier League title with three games to go and finish their spectacular campaign at Brentford on Sunday.
Four of Henry’s goal involvements came in Arsenal’s final league game of the season when the Gunners hammered Sunderland 4-0 away from home. Despite the title being out of reach, as were Manchester United already confirmed as champions, Arsene Wenger‘s side won big thanks to Henry’s opening goal and three assists for hat-trick hero Freddie Ljungberg.
Haaland, meanwhile, has already broken countless records since arriving from Borussia Dortmund last summer, such as bagging the most Premier League goals in a 38-game season, as City fended off Henry’s old club to win the title. The Citizens are now dreaming of an incredible treble triumph by beating bitter rivals United in the FA Cup final and winning the Champions League against Inter.
The 22-year-old striker has, of course, been instrumental this campaign, as was Henry to Arsenal’s success either side of the turn of the century. Haaland lifted his first trophy as a City player last Sunday, telling Sky Sports in the aftermath: “I saw a stat of Arsenal being 240 something days top of the table, and we were like 20.
Have your say! Who’ll have the greatest legacy – Erling Haaland or Thierry Henry? Let us know in the comments section.
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“We were chasing after something the whole season and then to get hold of it is such a relief and such an amazing feeling. With all the experience in this club, they’ve won the Premier League for the fifth time a lot of them.
“The hard work you do throughout the whole season, it’s what you get in the end. Now in the last couple of weeks, that’s when everything gets decided. That’s why it’s even better to win it, it’s a marathon. It’s not just one game, it’s the whole season, 38 games.”
The draw with Brighton ended City’s superb 12-game winning streak in the league but boss Pep Guardiola welcomed facing such a difficult challenge. “Games like tonight are very beneficial,” Guardiola explained. “We need these opponents to bring us to our maximum. It’s really good that these teams keep us at our levels.
“All of them, the team was there and that’s why I’m very, very pleased because I know how difficult it was and I don’t want us to drop our rhythm before the two finals. We had it against Chelsea and we need it again against Brentford.”