When Real Madrid speculates about the future successor to Ballon d'Or winner Karim Benzema, only one name usually comes up: Erling Haaland. In 2024, the campaign for the Norwegian storm giant could start again, until then the Frenchman Benzema should continue to hunt for goals with the royal team.
From 9 p.m. (DAZN) the next direct encounter between the two exceptional strikers will take place when Manchester City and Real meet in the second leg of the semi-finals. At 1: 1 a week ago, the striker duel also ended in a draw: both remained pale and without a goal.
The winner of the goalscorer duel could also decide the summit meeting between the English champions and the Champions League titleholders from Spain. In any case, Real coach Carlo Ancelotti has been warned. "The day before the game you are calm, full of hope. On the day of the game, worries come. You think about whether Haaland will score, whether De Bruyne will hurt you," said the Italian title collector, who has already won the premier class four times, twice with real.
Haaland actually always scores
De Bruyne had already hurt Real with his equalizer in the first leg. And Haaland? The former BVB striker always scores. Twelve goals in nine Champions League games, he even managed a five-pack in the 7-0 win against RB Leipzig. He also scored twice in the two quarter-finals against Bayern. He has already set a record in the Premier League with 36 goals. "He's incredible. He's only 22," enthuses Guardiola of his goalscorer.
Ancelotti's appreciation for Benzema is hardly less. For the mister, the Frenchman is "a legend". True, last season he almost single-handedly shot the Spanish record champions to the title with 15 goals in the premier class. Man City also had to experience this painfully. He scored three times in the two semi-final duels, and he also scored the decisive goal in extra time to advance. Does the 35-year-old do it again on Wednesday?