Erling Haaland slammed ahead of Rangers clash as injuries mean Dortmund striker can’t claim to be ‘world class’

Former Arsenal goalkeeper Jens Lehmann says Erling Haaland is not “world class” with the striker a major injury doubt to face Rangers.

The 21-year-old is one of the most coveted strikers in Europe, having banged in 80 goals in just 79 games for Borussia Dortmund.

This season though he’s been struggling with muscular issues, and Haaland is a major doubt for the Europa League first leg against Rangers on Thursday.

And one former Dortmund star believes that injury record means the striker can never be branded world class, as he appeared to cast doubt on his commitment off the pitch.

Lehmann told Bild: “One thing is clear: You are a world-class player if you always play. Otherwise you’re not.

“When you’re 20, you think you don’t need stretching and the weight room.

“With Ronaldo, we all think it’s great that he lives an ascetic life at 36, is still really fast and in shape, plays in the Premier League.

“And as a young player, I would take that as an example.”

However, that criticism was refuted by former Norway striker Jan Aage Fjörtoft, a friend of Haaland’s family.

He told the same outlet: “I don’t know anyone who works as professionally as Erling Haaland. He is what you call a 24/7 athlete.

“He tries to find improvements all the time – on and off the pitch.”

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