Former Manchester City star Micah Richards celebrated Erling Haaland’s majestic winner against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League, but admitted he would beat Kylian Mbappe in a hypothetical football squad.
Both Mbappe and Haaland scored two of the Champions League on an action-packed day of play as PSG and Manchester City took comeback victories.
During CBS Sports’ postgame coverage, Richards was asked which of the strikers he would choose.
With such an ambiguous question, the Englishman naturally sought clarification.
Micah Richards was in good shape after Manchester City’s dramatic victory over Dortmund
He asked, ‘What are we talking about? All-round game?’
Richards was turned down and asked to just pick one or the other, but Richards settled for the Paris Saint-Germain attacker.
“I would still take Mbappe,” admitted Richards. “Because I like Mbappe, I like the way he moves.”
Immediately fellow pundit Jamie Carragher jumped in and asked, ‘So you don’t like Manchester City’s Erling Haaland?’
Richards chose Kylian Mbappe (right) over Erling Haaland (left) when pressed to choose
“I didn’t say that,” Richards chided. “I just said I prefer Mbappe.”
Richards has stopped taking Mbappe over Haaland in all circumstances, and he admits the former Borussia Dortmund star is a much better fit for Pep Guardiola’s side.
Carragher posed the question, “So you’d rather play Man City than Haaland?”
“No, not in this system,” Richards replied. “Not in this system.”
Haaland has had an erratic start to life with the reigning Premier League champions
“As number nine, Haaland on the Man City team, I’d rather have him, but all round play, Mbappe.”
Haaland was the talk of the town in the studio after his 84th-minute winner against the Bundesliga club, but Richards pumped the breaks on him and continued with his current scoring percentage.
He added: “Let’s not talk too much about him. I think he can be that superstar, but he’s also had his injury problems. It’s not realistic, right?
Richards played 179 times for the reigning Premier League champions between 2005-15 and scored six times for the club’s Etihad Stadium.
He is also an ambassador for the club, and has been in the role for several years.
Carragher continued to troll his sparring partner once he was off the air, tweeting that his position may not have been so secure after his comments.
Carragher joked that his fellow CBS expert had jeopardized his role as ambassador to Man City with a choice
‘Micah Richards jeopardizes his role as #ManCity ambassador!’
Haaland’s wonder goal was born from his ability to launch himself almost parallel to the air and stick out a protruding foot to prod the ball home.
“I’ve always wondered what he’s doing,” Carragher told CBS of Haaland’s acrobatic efforts.
Lionel Messi (L), Mbappe (C) and Neymar (R) all scored as the Parisians left Israel with a win
The Norwegian declined to celebrate out of respect for his former Dortmund employers
“But that’s why he does it because he has a brilliant ability, you know, great spring when he’s in the air, very acrobatic and a special goal from a special player.”
Arsenal legend Thierry Henry weighed in with his expert thoughts on the unique approach, rivaled only by a fellow Nordic giant.
“On this particular occasion, he had to do it, but sometimes he doesn’t have to jump,” he said.
‘Zlatan’ [Ibrahimovic] did it before, and still does. They go with their feet in the air and try to finish, but the ball of [Joao] Cancelo, please let’s talk about it.’
Carragher, again playing the prankster, said, “Do you think Mbappe could have scored?”
Henry replied emphatically and factually, “No, but he created and scored tonight.”
Richards was a great servant to the Manchester club over a ten-year period from 2005-15′