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Everton turned down opportunity to sign Erling Haaland for just £60,000

Erling Haaland sitting with Borussia Dortmund teammates
(Image credit: Getty)

In one of those remarkable cases of what might have been, it has emerged that Everton (opens in new tab) rejected the chance to sign Erling Haaland - for a mere £60,000!

The 21-year-old striker - who will join Manchester City (opens in new tab) from Borussia Dortmund (opens in new tab) this summer in a £51-million deal - had a spell on trial with the Toffees back in 2016.

But the Merseyside club opted against signing the then 15-year-old Haaland, citing concerns that he would become less of a force with age. 

In an interview with The Times (opens in new tab), Everton's Scandinavian scout Bryan King explained why they rejected Haaland - who was with Norwegian outfit Bryne at the time. King said:

"We could have had him for a compensation fee of £60,000.

"But the consensus was he was so young and so big that once he got older and other players got bigger too, he'd lose his effectiveness."

How wrong that consensus has proved to be... 

Haaland - who eventually left Bryne for Molde and then moved into Red Bull Salzburg, where he first truly came to the world's attention - has developed into one of the most prolific finishers in the game, banging in 86 goals in 89 appearances for Dortmund.

And last year, he became the youngest player to reach 20 Champions League goals - achieving the feat in just 14 matches, also a record.

Haaland found the net in his final appearance for Dortmund on Saturday - a 2-1 win over Hertha Berlin on the last day of the Bundesliga season - later tweeting that it had "been nothing but an honour" to represent the Black and Yellows.

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Tom Hancock started freelancing for FourFourTwo in April 2019 and has also written for The Analyst and When Saturday Comes, among others. He supports Wycombe Wanderers and can also occasionally be found watching Wealdstone. A self-confessed statto, he has been known to watch football with a spreadsheet (or several) open...