Erling Haaland is already an enemy of Manchester United fans – but he says he's been having a pop at Red Devils supporters ever since he lived in Norway.
FourFourTwo sat down with the Manchester City striker for an exclusive chat about his ambitions for the future and his journey thus far, with Haaland telling us all about how he grew up as a Citizen. Erling's father, Alfie, played for the club, with City referencing the fact in his announcement video on social media (opens in new tab).
It seems as if despite growing up in Scandinavia, the dislike of City's rivals is something that Haaland has inherited, too.
“Jadon Sancho and I had a great connection on and off the pitch at Dortmund,” he told FFT – but refused to say the words, “Manchester United”, adding, “He plays for the other lot now though, so maybe we’ll have to meet in secret!”
Haaland actually took aim at United when he was unveiled at City in front of huge crowds. When asked which team he was most looking forward to playing, the forward shrugged and smiled, before responding, “Look, I don't like to say the words… but Manchester United.”
The Norwegian had previously been linked to the red side of Manchester, with Haaland's Molde boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer interested in bringing his former protege to Old Trafford with him. The new City star actually turned down Solskjaer and the Red Devils for Borussia Dortmund, however, before eventually moving to Manchester this summer from Germany.
“Look, it’s all about banter and I enjoy that. I’ve already met some United supporters here in the city, and we’re always joking with each other. It’s about not taking everything too seriously.
“There are a lot of United fans in my home town in Norway, so I’ve always had to have a go at them. I’m used to this and I love it. Don’t take things too seriously.
“I want to be able to talk a bit like the fans, otherwise it gets a bit boring, doesn’t it?”
Manchester City host their neighbours at the Etihad Stadium on October 2.
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