Four-goal Manchester City striker Erling Haaland swats aside Roy Keane criticism

Erling Haaland swatted aside the criticism of Roy Keane after blasting Manchester City to an emphatic win over Wolves with four goals.

Four-goal Manchester City striker Erling Haaland swats aside Roy Keane criticism

Former Manchester Untied midfielder Keane compared the prolific City striker to a “League Two player” when referring to his general play last month.

Haaland put those remarks aside with a devastating return to top form as City crushed Wolves 5-1 to retain control of the Premier League title race.

“I don’t really care that much about that man, so that’s all right,” said Haaland in an interview with a broadcaster from his native Norway.

Any bitterness is likely rooted in Keane’s long-running feud with Haaland’s father Alf-Inge. Keane was notoriously sent off for a horrific tackle on Haaland senior in 2001.

Haaland stunned Wolves with a first-half hat-trick, two of which were penalties, and took his tally for the campaign to 36 in all competitions with a brilliant fourth.

Substitute Julian Alvarez wrapped up the scoring as City moved back within a point of leaders Arsenal at the top of the table with a game in hand.

“We just have to win our games now, relax tonight and focus on Fulham,” Haaland added.

Four-goal Manchester City striker Erling Haaland swats aside Roy Keane criticism - 2

Haaland scored 52 goals in his brilliant first season at City and manager Pep Guardiola insisted any drop-off in form this term is largely down to his injury problems.

Guardiola said: “He was injured. To come back to his best form, he needs time. He is so tall. He’s not like Jeremy (Doku) or Phil (Foden).

“I’m happy for his performance and his exceptional goals, and the penalties as well because we know how sometimes they are not easy.

“But the second and the fourth were unbelievable. I’m really pleased for him.”

City have three games remaining compared to Arsenal’s two.

Guardiola said: “It was a better result than performance. People see 5-1 but I don’t have the feeling that was really good.

“But we are happy with the result. Now we have to take nine points, otherwise Arsenal will win the title.”

Wolves boss Gary O’Neil felt City’s first penalty, awarded after a clash between Josko Gvardiol and Rayan Ait-Nouri, was debatable but admitted City deserved their victory.

O’Neil, whose side mustered a consolation through Hwang Hee-chan, said: “The first penalty, I thought, was a really poor decision. It was a strange one.

“But we have to take responsibility for the way the game unfolded. I think we made a lot of errors, unforced ones as well, which gave Manchester City some really good chances.

“You can get away with some mistakes against other teams but we knew we needed to try and be as close to perfect as possible here, and we fell short on numerous occasions.

“That meant it was a fairly comfortable afternoon for Manchester City.”