Pep Guardiola has hailed Manchester City’s backroom staff for keeping the irrepressible Erling Haaland fit and firing this season.
Haaland has scored a stunning 45 goals in all competitions for City since his £51million move from Borussia Dortmund last summer – a record for a Premier League player.
There had been some concerns about Haaland’s fitness record prior to his arrival at the Etihad Stadium but the prolific Norwegian has so far missed just three City games through injury.
City manager Guardiola said: “I don’t know what he’s done in Dortmund but we take care of him 24 hours – we have incredible doctors and physios. They are behind him every second of the day.
“With this demanding schedule of games every three or four days we have to take care of them – with nutrition, rest, sleep, food.
“For the training, how many minutes – there is data. Sometimes they cannot train more than 10 or 15 minutes.
“People say why was he subbed against Leipzig when he’d scored all the goals but then he was injured after the Burnley game. He could not play with us against Liverpool or for Norway.
“We know we have to keep a watch because he’s so big. Physios, massage, backs, shoulders, tendons, everything.
Champions City face Leicester on Saturday with the chance to cut Arsenal’s lead at the top of the Premier League to three points.
City, who face the Gunners in a crunch clash later this month, have their title destiny back in their own hands after the London side were held to a draw at Liverpool last week.
Guardiola admits he is much happier with that situation. He said: “Definitely it’s better, absolutely. We enjoy it.
“I would love to be in Arsenal’s position right now but I’m delighted to be in the position we are.”
Guardiola said: “Nobody can guarantee we are going to win the game in hand against the best team in the world making the build-up, Brighton.
“There is no team better in modern football that makes the process from keeper to the last quarter right now, and we have Arsenal at home.
“We could drop points. The reality is we are six behind and we have to win our games.”