MANCHESTER, UK – Erling Haaland is back home.
The Norwegian striker completed his €60million (CAD$80.6million) move from Borussia Dortmund to Manchester City on Monday to seal his return to his native England.
His father Alf-Inge played for City in the Premier League from 2000 to 2003 and was briefly captain. Erling encouraged the team as a child, often traveling with his mother to Maine Road – the club’s former home – to watch her father play. He has posted pictures on social media of him wearing a City shirt as a young boy.
Haaland said his family connections were one of the reasons he joined City despite interest from many other top European clubs.
“First my father, a little bit,” he said. I was born in England. I’ve been a City fan all my life. I know a lot about the club. »
“In the end it was two things. I feel at home here and feel like I can develop and get the best out of my game at City. I like the style (of the game). I like attacking football. I like the positive atmosphere when City play football. That’s what I really like, so I think it’s a good marriage. »
Haaland, who is considered one of the best young players in the world alongside Kylian Mbappe, has signed a five-year contract. City have activated the release clause in Haaland’s Dortmund contract and appear to be getting a superstar cheaply.
“We’ve had Erling on our radar for a number of years so we’re delighted to bring him here to Manchester City,” said club football director Txiki Begiristain.
“He has tremendous talent and has been one of the best strikers in Europe in recent seasons. His goal record is exceptional and his performances at Borussia Dortmund and in the Champions League in particular have proven he can succeed at the highest level. Erling has everything we want in a striker and we’re sure he’ll shine in this team and system. »
Haaland scored 20 goals in 21 games for Norway and scored 86 goals in 89 games in two and a half seasons for Club Dortmund. Before that he was with Molde in Norway and then with Salzburg in Austria, where he first caught the eye of big European clubs with his performances in the Champions League.