There’s something about Erling Braut Haaland beyond his numbers. He may be breaking records like it’s a cinch, but there’s more to it than what meets the eye.
The Norwegian was courted by massive clubs like Manchester United and Juventus, but he signed for Borussia Dortmund from Red Bull Salzburg in the winter break. Since then, he has made everyone sit up and take notice. Kylian Mbappe may not enjoy staying away from the limelight for far too long, a case that now looks a possibility.
At his age, he’s got confidence writ large on his face, and he backs it up with performances. The combination is both rare and deadly, and exactly what makes him special.
Since coming to Signal Iduna, the man has broken a record every time he has taken the field, almost. He scored a hat-trick after coming on in the 56th minute, and there’s just one player younger than him in the Bundesliga to achieve that – Walter Berchthold from Eintracht Frankfurt. The latter had started the game.
His hat-trick came in just 23 minutes, seven minutes quicker than Finn Joel, who previously held the record. In the next game, he scored twice, making it five goals in 57 minutes. This was a novelty, even for the talent-laden Bundesliga.
He’s the only player to have scored for two different clubs in the UEFA Champions League, and the way he went about it has been breath-taking. A few compare his attitude to Zlatan Ibrahimovic, while some call him closer to his inspiration, Cristiano Ronaldo. For someone just 19, Haaland works extremely hard.
In Dortmund’s last Champions League game against PSG, he scored twice to win the game for his side against a team that featured Angel Di Maria, Mbappe and Neymar. It isn’t just about the goals though.
According to Sky Italia, the Norwegian ran a 60-meter sprint in 6.64 seconds during a Dortmund counter-attack after defending a corner. The world record is 6.34 seconds. This proves that the lad is willing to work hard. He enjoys his goals, pretty evidently. He plays with a swagger that impresses some and bemuses others. He clearly is well-built, and his movement is pretty swift for someone as tall as him.
— footballsta (@footbalsta_) February 18, 2020
He’ll go down in the history books as a huge talent if he doesn’t make it to the ‘one of the best strikers ever’ list. His movement off-the-ball is sensible, and his presence in front of the goal is one of the most natural in recent times. His records, the ones he has already made, speak for themselves and his phoenix-like rise shows that he’s no pushover.
Opposition defenders would want him to forget his past, or at least, not repeat it. At the U20 World Cup 2019 in Poland, he scored nine goals as Norway defeated Honduras 12-0. This was at the age of 18! He’s already scored 8 goals in 5 games for Dortmund in the Bundesliga and isn’t looking in the mood to stop. Where will this man stop? Has football got its next Messi-Ronaldo battle in Haaland-Mbappe? We will allow you to ponder on that for a bit.
Stay Rackonnected and learn more about sports.