Erling Haaland Hails 'Extraordinary' Kylian Mbappe, Talks PSG UCL Performance

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistMarch 10, 2020

DORTMUND, GERMANY - FEBRUARY 18: Erling Braut Haaland of Borussia Dortmund is challenged by Marco Verratti of Paris Saint-Germain during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg match between Borussia Dortmund and Paris Saint-Germain at Signal Iduna Park on February 18, 2020 in Dortmund, Germany. (Photo by Boris Streubel/Getty Images)
Boris Streubel/Getty Images

Erling Haaland has said he "could have been much better" in the first leg of Borussia Dortmund's UEFA Champions League last-16 tie against Paris Saint-Germain despite scoring both the German club's goals in the 2-1 win on February 18. 

The return leg takes place at the Parc des Princes on Wednesday. BVB go into the match on a run of five consecutive wins in all competitions.

Haaland has scored four goals in that time to take his tally for Dortmund to 12 goals in just 10 appearances since joining the club in January from Red Bull Salzburg.

The 19-year-old is not getting carried away with his remarkable form, though.

Despite playing a key role in giving Dortmund a potentially crucial lead against PSG, he believes he could have done better in the first leg, and he was full of praise for the French club's star man, Kylian Mbappe, per France Football (h/t Goal):

"Yes, OK, I scored two goals, but I also made a lot of mistakes during this match. So let's say it could have been much better than that. 

"[Mbappe] is a fantastic player. It was the first time I played against him in the first leg. He has so much talent, and even more. He is an extraordinary player. Everything he did at his age and when you look at his record, it's completely crazy. He's a great player."

Dortmund last reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League in 2016-17, when they were knocked out by Monaco.

In that same campaign, PSG suffered a humiliating last-16 exit to Barcelona despite having won the first leg 4-0.

They have also fallen at the first knockout round in Europe's elite competition in the two seasons since and are in danger of underachieving again after an underwhelming performance in the first leg against Dortmund:

Robin Bairner @RBairner

FT: Dortmund 2-1 PSG Haaland with a special strike to give the hosts a deserved win. Messy PSG performance, particularly in midfield, while Neymar and Mbappe were both rather disappointing, despite the goal. Tie in the balance - but big improvement needed.

PSG's poor recent record in the Champions League is likely to prey on their minds on Wednesday, and that should play to Dortmund's advantage, especially if they can score the first goal.

The fixture is set to be played behind closed doors due to fear over the spread of the coronavirus:

Football on BT Sport @btsportfootball

Due to the ongoing Coronavirus crisis, PSG v Dortmund will take place behind closed doors. https://t.co/eLxDWV5sBm

As a result, PSG will be robbed of home support, but it will also prevent any negativity spilling from the stands should the hosts not start well. 


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