Erling Braut Haaland: The ‘terrifying’ Leeds-born striker coached by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and linked with Manchester United transfer

18 Sep

Erling Braut Haaland looks set to be a future star.

The 19-year-old striker scored a first-half hat-trick on his Champions League debut to help RB Salzburg to a 6-2 win over Genk on Tuesday.

Erling Braut Haaland became the first teenager to score a hat-trick on his Champions League debut since Wayne Rooney in 2004
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Haaland, who has been called ‘The Manchild’ and ‘unusually large’ due to his enormous frame, is the son of former Leeds and Nottingham Forest defender Alf-Inge Haaland.

The youngster is tearing up the Austrian Bundesliga with 11 goals in seven games this season and became the third youngest player to net a Champions League hat-trick – behind Raul and Wayne Rooney.

Below gives an in-depth insight into all you need to know about Haaland…

Erling Braut Haaland - 2019/20

Age: 19

Club: RB Salzburg

Position: Striker

Nationalilty: Norway

League appearances: 7

League goals: 11

Champions League appearances: 1

Champions League goals: 3

What’s the gossip?

Before officially joining RB Salzburg from Norwegian club Molde on a five-year deal in January, Haaland was linked with a move to Manchester United.

And with his form in Europe so far this season, the Red Devils could renew their interest.

Leeds-born Haaland was signed and coached by United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Molde, with the Norwegian once comparing him to Romelu Lukaku.

In 2017, Haaland revealed his ‘dream’ was to win the Premier League title with Leeds.

He said: “I want to be the best possible.

“The dream is to win the Premier League with Leeds.

“In addition, the goal is to become a better player than my dad was. I hope to get more caps than he did.”

Club and international career so far?

Haaland has already scored three hat-tricks since the start of the 2019/20 campaign and has netted a remarkable 17 goals in nine games in all competitions for RB Salzburg this term.

His form was rewarded with a call-up to the senior Norway side where he made two appearances against Malta and Sweden earlier this month.

Representing Norway at the Under-20 World Cup during the summer, Haaland scored NINE goals in a 12-0 win over Honduras.

Haaland could light up Euro 2020, but Norway face an uphill battle to qualify for next summer’s tournament with Spain, Sweden and Romania ahead of them.

Haaland is one to watch this season following a stunning start to the season
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What is being said about him?

Norwegian football journalist Lars Sivertsen has heaped praise on Haaland, insisting he can play in a better division than the Austrian Bundesliga.

On Sunday, Sivertsen told talkSPORT: “He’s a big lad! He’s 6ft 4ins and still has such a baby face. It looks like someone’s tried to draw a boy and made him too big by accident. He’s unusually large.

“He’s got the body of a big centre-half, except he plays up front. The thing that’s remarkable about him is that he’s not slow either.

“He gets about the pitch, he’s quite fluid in his movement. He’s decent with the ball and he’s a decent finisher. He’s got a lot of good ingredients for an absolutely terrifying striker.

Erling Braut Haaland dismantled Genk’s defence on Tuesday
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“He looks like a guy who’s playing at the wrong level, he should not be playing in the Austrian league. I don’t think they anticipated him developing as quickly as he has.

“He’s looking absolutely terrifying and has so many ingredients to be a top forward. This is something that scouts will look for – it’s not as easy when you look for big and strong players.

“But players who have size and are still quick on the ground, it’s one of those things you can’t teach.”

Sivertsen reckons Haaland is a player Solskjaer could look to bring to Old Trafford in the future.

He added: “Erling Haaland went to Molde and played under Solskjaer for a while where he grew so big. He shot up and grew something like 10, 15 centimetres in a year.

“He put on a crazy amount of weight in a good way, loads of muscle. He was 17, but had the body of a 27-year-old centre-half.

“All the other players at Molde used to tease him and call him ‘The Manchild’, just because he didn’t look like a 17-year-old.

“If what United are doing, even irrespective of whether Solskjaer stays there long-term or not, it does seem if you look at their transfer business this summer that what they want to do is buy younger guys.

“Instead of signing superstars they’re signing people who are on the way up a bit, so yeah, he [Haaland] is a guy you might want to look at.”

Haaland celebrates during the huge Champions League win
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How much is he likely to cost?

Haaland is currently valued at £10.8million, according to Transfermarkt.

But that valuation will increase by a huge amount if he keeps up his incredible scoring form.

Manchester United transfer news: Molde director confirms Premier League interest in Erling Braut Haaland, son of Alf-Inge Haaland

6 Jul

There is definite interest from Manchester United in Erling Braut Haaland.

That’s according Molde director Øystein Neerland, who said the club have sent scouts to watch their talented 17-year-old.

Haaland recently scored four goals in 20 minutes for the Norwegian club, who are managed by Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, against league rivals Brann in a 4-0 win and it was reported United had someone there to see it.

“There are a lot of interested clubs, including Manchester United,” Neerland told TV2 in Norway.

“I know that there have been representatives from them at Aker Stadium on several occasions this season, but I can neither confirm nor deny whether they were in Bergen (where Haaland scored four times).

If the surname sounds familiar it is because he is the son of Alf-Inge Haaland, who played for Leeds and Man City, two of Man United’s biggest rivals, and just so happens to have had a long running feud with former Old Trafford skipper Roy Keane.

Roy Keane shouts at an injured Alf-Inge Haaland after the United captain’s tackle on him in 2001

And naturally it is with his father’s former clubs where Haaland junior’s loyalties lie – from a fan’s point of view anyway.

Speaking in February 2017, Haaland, born shortly after his dad left Elland Road for Nottingham Forest in 2000, admitted his dream is to win the Premier League with Leeds.

“I want to be the best possible,” he told Aftenposten.

“The dream is to win the Premier League with Leeds.

“In addition, the goal is to become a better player than my dad was. I hope to get more caps than he did.”

Manchester United target Erling Braut Haaland, son of Alf-Inge Haaland, has ‘dream to win the Premier League with Leeds United’

4 Jul

Manchester United have been scouting Erling Braut Haaland, the son of the man Roy Keane famously clashed with – Alf-Inge Haaland.

Back in 1997, in a match between Leeds and United, Keane injured his anterior cruciate ligament while trying to challenge the elder Haaland, who lent over Keane and supposedly shouted at him for feigning injury.

However, Keane’s problem was serious, and he missed almost a year of football as he recovered.

Keane was handed a five-match ban and fined £150,000 for admitting he intentionally hurt Haaland

But the Old Trafford legend never forgot Haaland’s words, and he entered the 2001 Manchester derby with the view of getting back at the former Norway international. Keane did just that, being shown a red card for a horrific knee-high challenge on Haaland.

Haaland’s son, Erling Braut, has since broken onto the scene playing for Norwegian club Molde, and United sent scouts to watch him in action against Brann on Sunday.

The younger Haaland was exceptional, scoring all four of the games goals in 21 minutes as Molde, managed by United great Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, defeated the league leaders.

Such a performance has led to suggestions Man United will move to sign Haaland, but if they do that, the Red Devils will be getting hold of a devout Leeds fan.

Speaking back in February 2017, Haaland, born shortly after his father left Elland Road for Nottingham Forest in the summer of 2000, admitted his dream is to win the Premier League – but with Leeds, not Man United.

“I want to be the best possible,” Haaland told Aftenposten.

“The dream is to win the Premier League with Leeds.

“In addition, the goal is to become a better player than my dad was. I hope to get more caps than he did.”

Manchester United interested in Erling Braut Haaland, son of Roy Keane nemesis Alf-Inge Haaland

2 Jul

Manchester United are monitoring Molde teenager, Erling Braut Haaland, son of Alf-Inge, who Roy Keane famously floored during a 2001 Manchester derby.

The 17-year-old Haaland scored four goals in 21 minutes for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side in a 4-0 win against Norwegian league-leaders Brann on Sunday.

The aftermath of Keane’s infamous horror tackle

And according to ESPN, United’s Scandinavian scout Tommy Moller Nielsen was in attendance to watch Haaland, who has played for Norway’s various age groups and at the time of writing has scored nine goals in six U19 games.

The Old Trafford link, though, will bring back painful memories for his father, who is remembered for his feud with Keane.

In 1997, Keane injured his anterior cruciate ligament trying to tackle Haaland, then of Leeds United. As Keane lay on the ground, Haaland leaned over and shouted at him, suggesting he was feigning injury. The United captain was stretchered off and out of action for nearly a year afterwards.

Then, when the pair met in the 2001 Manchester derby, Keane was sent off for a vicious, bone-crunching assault on Haaland’s knee and later admitted in his autobiography that it was a premeditated act of vengeance.

“I’d waited long enough. I fucking hit him hard,” he wrote in his 2002 autobiography, Keane. “The ball was there (I think). Take that you cunt. And don’t ever stand over me sneering about fake injuries. Even in the dressing room afterwards, I had no remorse. My attitude was, fuck him. What goes around, comes around. He got his just rewards. He fucks me over and my attitude is an eye for an eye.”

It caused a furore at the time and the midfielder was fined £150,000 by the FA, though Keane has tried to clear up the comments by claiming he never set out to injure Haaland.

He wanted to nail him, but as he wrote in his book, The Second Half: “There’s a difference between kicking somebody and injuring somebody. Any experienced player will tell you that.”

In 2017, Haaland’s son revealed he harbours dreams of following in his father’s footsteps and playing for Leeds.

“I think I can develop myself to be even better and more professional at Molde,” he told Norwegian news outlet Aftenposten.

“I know they are good at it. They have developed many players to become good. I want to be the best possible.

“The dream is to win the Premier League with Leeds. In addition, the goal is to become a better player than my dad was. I hope to get more [Norway] caps than he did.”