• Adwitya Jha

Best Bits: Erling Haaland's first Man City interview – Talk with Pep, Mahrez in Mykonos, Maine Road

Erling Haaland's highly anticipated move to Manchester City finally concluded today as the club announced the signing of the big, mercurial striker on a five-year contract.

The club released a wide array of media content to celebrate the massive signing and also released the traditional introductory interview with Rob Pollard of the City media team asking the questions.

 

The interview kicked off with Haaland professing his love for City, confirming that he has been a fan of the club all his life.


He was asked about City's style of play, and whether he thought that he was a good fit for the club, to which Haaland gave a trademark short and witty reply:

"Yeah, of course; if not, I wouldn't come here!"

Haaland was then asked whether he had been imagining himself in the City team in certain positions over the past season, to which he responded:

"Yes, I have, and yeah, it's going to be good."
Photo courtesy of Manchester City

The Norwegian was then asked whether he thought linking up with Pep Guardiola was a perfect match and if he had a chance to speak to the Catalan:

"I think I can develop a lot under Pep and in this club. I think I can get better on a lot of things, and hopefully, I can score a lot of goals."
"Yeah, I've spoken a little bit with him and we're both looking forward to working together."

The big striker was then asked about his staggering goal-scoring record throughout his career and what he would put that down to:

"I think it's a good mix between a lot of things. I think, first of all, it's my joy to play football; to try to enjoy every single moment – and when I enjoy, I win football games and I score goals. I always want to have fun."

City will be hopeful that Haaland can enjoy his football and turn into the match-winner that the club and player both believe he can be.


On the video of Jude Bellingham and the Norway international walking out at the Etihad Stadium for open training before the 20/21 Champions League quarter-final first-leg, when Haaland described the Etihad Stadium as beautiful, the player said:

"First of all, I've been a couple of times before [to the Etihad], watching games, and yeah, I like it, it's beautiful, I like the colour. It's a big, huge stadium, and I'm looking forward to playing there."

Haaland was then reminded about the conversation he had with Phil Foden after the same game and then asked to give his assessment on the England international:

"I've been watching a lot of City games for as long as I can remember, so of course, I've also watched Phil, and he's an amazing player. Still, a talent because he is still young, but he is an amazing player, and he still has to develop, and then we can really talk."

Haaland was also quizzed on his relationship with Riyad Mahrez after they bumped into each other in Mykonos while on vacation last summer:

"Yeah, he told me to come to City, so he was right about that. He talked, he said some good things about the club."

The now infamous tweet from Mahrez captioned “Agent Mahrez on duty” will surely go down in City Twitter folklore.


Photo courtesy of Erling Haaland

Erling then revealed the role played by his father, former blue Alfie, in selling the club and helping make the decision to join:

"He lived in England, he played for the club. Of course, a lot of things have changed in the last 20 years, but he lived here, so he knows what it is. We've just been speaking about what it is and what's the best for me. He's been a good dad in that."






Did he ever take you to Maine Road?

"Yeah, I've been to a lot of games, I don't remember, but I was in a lot of games with my mum, sister and brother, watching my father."

Haaland was then asked about a certain record he held as a five-year-old for the longest standing long jump, for which he gave credit to his mum, as she was into various track and field sports when she was younger, which subsequently attracted Erling.

On his rap group “Flow Kingz”:

"That's true, yeah [brief rap career]. It's a group of three; Erik Botheim and Erik Tobias. We are three good friends that were a bit bored, so we decided to make a rap song!"

The interview was one among various social media content released by City to announce the arrival of the big striker. It gave some special insight into the life of Haaland when he was young, his love for the club from a young age, and how he wants to fulfil his potential at the club of his dreams.


It also acted as a nice reminder to all fans that Erling Haaland, the best young striker in a generation, and one of the most coveted players in world football, was indeed now a Manchester City player.

Photo courtesy of Manchester City
 

Written by: @adwitya16


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