Gerard Pique delivers measured judgment on Kylian Mbappe-Erling Haaland debate

Forwards Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland are widely regarded as two of the best young footballers in Europe at the moment, having combined to score 63 club goals this season

Gerard Pique couldn't decide on a favorite between Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe
Gerard Pique couldn’t decide on a favorite between Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe

Barcelona icon Gerard Pique struggled when asked to choose a favorite between Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland, admitting it’s ‘difficult to choose’.

The two are regarded as the best young forwards in European football. Mbappe, 23, has scored 167 goals in 214 appearances in all competitions for Paris Saint-Germain since joining the club – initially on loan – from Monaco in the summer of 2017.

The Frenchman has won countless titles at club and international level – including five Ligue 1 titles, three French Cups, two French League Cups, two French Super Cups, the World Cup and the Nations League. He has so far won 54 caps for his country.

Haaland, on the other hand, has been in top form since joining Borussia Dortmund in January 2020 – he has scored 61 goals in 66 Bundesliga games. The 21-year-old Norwegian’s honors include two Austrian championship titles, the Austrian Cup and the German Cup.

Both young footballers have excellent CVs and on the latest episode of The Overlap, Pique couldn’t decide on a favorite when asked by Gary Neville. “They are two of the best players at the moment,” admitted the veteran defender.

“They are very young and both certainly have Ballon d’Or potential. I think Haaland is more of a pure striker, very strong and scoring a lot of goals. Mbappe is a more complete player – can play as a winger or as a striker. I had no opportunity to play against Haaland, I played against Mbappe. It’s difficult to decide.”

Kylian Mbappe has to decide whether to stay at PSG or join Real Madrid in the coming weeks


John Berry/Getty Images)

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On what other youngsters can become superstars, Pique added: “I think Pedri has a chance, Gavi is also very good for his age. We have great talent here at Barcelona right now, they are very good.”

Both Haaland and Mbappe could switch this summer. The latter’s current deal expires next month and Real Madrid have made no secret of their desire to sign him. However, Mbappe is believed to be close to signing a new two-year deal at PSG.

Regarding Haaland’s future, he has reportedly agreed terms for a move to Manchester City. Pep Guardiola’s side only have one recognized centre-forward on their books – Gabriel Jesus – and could use reinforcements.

Manchester City are reportedly interested in signing Erling Haaland this summer


(Getty Images)

Haaland and Mbappe will be happy if they can build on Pique’s successes at club and international level in the coming years. The 35-year-old is still a regular at Barcelona and recently made his 600th appearance for the club in all competitions.

Pique’s honors include eight La Liga titles, four Champions League titles, the World Cup, European Championship and Premier League. He has won 35 club-level trophies and 102 caps for Spain, retiring from international duty after the 2018 World Cup.

Pique started his professional career at Manchester United and joined Barcelona in the summer of 2008 to play under Guardiola. He was also on loan at Real Zaragoza and made 22 La Liga appearances in the 2006/07 season.

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