Man City boss Guardiola makes hilarious Messi joke as to why he substituted Haaland in 6-0 FA Cup thrashing of Burnley

PEP GUARDIOLA had supporters in stitches as he explained why he took off Erling Haaland against Burnley.

The Norwegian striker smashed records in midweek as he fired five past RB Leipzig in the club’s 7-0 Champions League win.

GettyPep Guardiola watched Erling Haaland scored another hat-trick for Man City against Burnley[/caption]

And he took his tally for the season to 42 yesterday with his sixth hat-trick of the campaign in the 6-0 FA Cup victory over the Clarets.

However, after revealing his disappointment at being denied a record-breaking double hat-trick on Tuesday after being subbed, he was taken off again on Saturday just after the hour mark.

Responding after criticism for denying Haaland the opportunity to surpass Lionel Messi’s five for Barcelona against Leverkusen, Guardiola delivered a brilliant quick-witted response when quizzed again about subbing his superstar.

The Spaniard, who managed Messi and won countless honours together with Barca, said: “I didn’t want him to break the record for Messi in the FA Cup.

“I try to punish my players – it is my intention!”

Guardiola added: “This guy (Haaland) will have a problem in the future because everyone will expect to him to get three or four every game, and that’s not going to happen.

“But I know him, he doesn’t care about that. He is so positive and optimistic in his life.

“He never complains and as long as the team plays with this intensity, he will score goals, though the exact target, I don’t know.

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“He is so effective and is such an incredible threat with his power.

“But his joy of life, always thinking good things will happen, that helps too.”