9. Erling Haaland
Erling Haaland: Player History, Teams, and Football Records
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Erling Haaland History and Highlights
Everyone expected great things when Erling Haaland arrived at Manchester City, but few people expected him to hit the ground running the way he did. It suddenly seems like no goalscoring records are safe from the young superstars.
Although Haaland now plays for the Norway national team, the prolific forward was born in Leeds, England. His dad is a former Premier League footballer who played for Leeds, Nottingham Forest, and Manchester City.
By age 5, though, the young boy was playing football and living in Bryne, Norway. He consistently impressed at the youth team, where he quickly rose through the ranks and forced his way into Bryne’s reserves at a very young age.
The first club to notice just how much talent the young forward had was Norwegian side Molde, who announced their signing of him when he was still just 16 years old. Just a couple of months later, he made his debut, scoring against Volda TI in a Norwegian Cup match. Despite being so young, Haaland made 20 appearances throughout that first season, scoring 4 goals.
He made headlines around Europe in 2018 when still, as a fresh-faced teenager, he scored four goals in the opening 21 minutes against Norwegian giants Brann.
With these kinds of performances, it was only a matter of time until Erling Haaland moved on to bigger things. A month after his demolition of Brann, Salzburg announced they’d agreed on a deal for him which would see him move clubs in January 2019.
He instantly fit in, scoring his first hat trick by July and his third by the beginning of September. That month he also scored a first-half hattrick on his Champions League Debut against Genk.
The Best Come Knocking
Clearly, Salzburg hadn’t been a big enough club for Erling Haaland, so he moved to German side Dortmund at the beginning of 2020. While not one of Europe’s titans, the club has a reputation for developing world-class players and had reached a Champions League final only several years earlier.
Haaland made things look just as easy in Germany and continued to impress on the European stage, where he was the Champions League’s top scorer for the 2020-21 season.
Completing the Climb
By 2022, it couldn’t be postponed any longer. Haaland wasn’t developing into a world-class player, he already was one. The world’s best sides were queuing up for his signature, and, despite stiff competition from the likes of Real Madrid and PSG, Man City managed to land their man.
He was widely expected to suit life in the Premier League, but few could have predicted just how much of an impact he would have off the bat. He is currently breaking records at an unprecedented speed as the English champion’s undisputed number 9.
Perhaps the one downside that could be said of Haaland’s career is the international aspect. While he performs just as well for Norway, the small country rarely competes at the top level, meaning the 2022 World Cup will be missing one of the world’s best players.
Erling Haaland Fast Facts
- Haaland is the youngest player to have scored 20 Champions League goals and looks set to be the youngest to reach many other milestones.
- Haaland could’ve been at the 2022 World Cup if he’d chosen to represent England. His birthplace earns him the right to play for the national team. But, heartbreakingly for England fans, once he pulled on the Norway shirt once, he’s barred from ever going back.
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