Like His Cousin Haaland, Albert Tjaland Has Forgotten How To Stop Scoring

Photo combo of Albert Tjaland and his cousin Erling Haaland

 

On the 13th of June, English champions, Manchester City, announced a shock signing worth 60 million Euros from Bundesliga side Dortmund, his name is Erling Haaland.

Since adorning the blue and white jersey of the Blues, Haaland has kept the Premier League on its toes becoming the fastest player to score 15 Premier League goals. He did it in just nine matches. He also became the first player to score in his first four away games in the Premier League.

Haaland’s cousin, Albert Tjaland, is also doing similar wonders, 2,570.3 km away from the city of Manchester in the Norwegian maritime municipality of Molde. The 18-year-old has impressively scored 64 goals in his first 37 games for the youth teams.

This means there could be a new sheriff in town in the next couple of years as the teenage sensation is proving that goal scoring could be in the family pool.

But Who Is Albert Tjaland?

He was born Albert Braut Tjaland and is the nephew of former Manchester City midfielder Alfie Haaland (father to Erling) and cousins with Jonatan Braut Brunes who plays for Strømsgodset as a striker.

Tjaland plays for Norwegian second-tier club Bryne on loan from top-flight club Molde. Standing at 5ft 10inches, lacking in the intimidating physical stature of his cousin, Haaland, whatever shortage there might be the teenager has more than made up for it in his pace and shooting.

Tjaland’s Career

He began his career at his boyhood club in Bryne where he played from the under-13 to the under-19.

He moved on to the Norwegian third division with Bryne 2 where his debut came on 19 October 2019. The youngster was a substitute in a 7–2 home defeat against Viking 2.

He began to attract attention after recording  64 goals in his first 37 games for the youth teams, while he hit the headlines once more after scoring on his professional debut for Molde last year, coming off the bench in the 83rd minute. The teenager has also scored once in two appearances for Norway under 21s.

Taking into account that Haaland took 422 minutes to score his first first-team goal, it remains to be seen when his cousin will achieve it.

Impressive displays in the youth ranks saw a promotion to the first team where he eventually made his debut with them on 2 March 2020 in a friendly game against Egersunds.

 

 

 

Guardiola Hails Humility Of Man City Stars To Welcome Haaland

Haaland is one of the new signings expected to bring fireworks to the EPL. [email protected]

 

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has praised the manner in which his star-studded squad have embraced the arrival of Erling Haaland without getting jealous over the Norwegian’s media attention.

Haaland has scored 19 times in 11 competitive games for the English champions in a stunning start to his career at City.

Under Guardiola, City have won the Premier League four times in the last five years among nine major trophies.

“Every press conference – 50 questions, 45 on Erling. For me it is ok and the guys here accept it perfectly,” said Guardiola on Friday.

“I’ve had the type of guys who wouldn’t like it. Four Premier League, fighting for everything, just talking about Erling? In other clubs, other people wouldn’t like it.

“Here, they are delighted. We don’t have incredible players who’d say: ‘All the time they just talk about him’. This is why it is a joy to train these type of players.”

READ ALSO: Arteta Urges Saliba To Focus On Himself Amid Van Dijk Comparisons

Haaland has scored in nine consecutive City games and was robbed of the chance to score a fourth hat-trick in five home matches when Guardiola withdrew him at half-time of Wednesday’s 5-0 win over FC Copenhagen after he struck twice in the first half.

And Guardiola hailed Haaland’s poacher’s instinct to seemingly always be in the right place when the ball breaks his way inside the box.

“He has an incredible instinct. What can I teach him? He has an incredible sense as a striker of where the ball is going to finish and he goes one second before the ball arrives,” added Guardiola.

“He has this talent, this quality. All the time – a cross, a deflection – he is there. This type of player – how can a manager teach him? It is impossible. It is instinct, completely natural.

“He did it in Norway, in Austria, in Germany and he does it here. He smells it.

“Thank you so much to him for choosing us, and to all the people involved bringing him here. We are fortunate to have this talent with us.”

Haaland’s second half rest in midweek means he is set to start as he aims to continue his scoring streak against Southampton on Saturday.

Kyle Walker will not be involved after undergoing groin surgery, but Guardiola could provide no further information on whether the defender will be back in time to feature for England at the World Cup next month.

AFP

Haaland Hails ‘Amazing’ City After United Rout

Manchester City’s Norwegian striker Erling Haaland celebrates scoring his team’s second goal during the English Premier League football match between Manchester City and Manchester United at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, north west England, on October 2, 2022. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP) 

 

Erling Haaland saluted Manchester City’s “amazing” performance as the Norway striker made history with yet another hat-trick in a 6-3 rout of Manchester United on Sunday.

Haaland destroyed United with the latest display of his predatory finishing, in the process becoming the first Premier League player to score a hat-trick in three consecutive home games in the competition.

After 52 years without a hat-trick scorer in the Manchester derby, City were able to celebrate two trebles in the same game against their arch-rivals as Phil Foden also bagged a treble at the Etihad Stadium.

Haaland has made an incredible start to life with the Premier League champions since signing from Borussia Dortmund in a £51 million ($56 million) deal that already looks a bargain.

He has 17 goals in 10 games in all competitions for Pep Guardiola’s side, including trebles against Crystal Palace and Nottingham Forest, and has now netted in eight successive City appearances.

“Not bad. We score six goals, it’s amazing, to win at home and score six goals is nice,” Haaland said.

“You see the passes we give each other. We always want to go forward and attack. It’s what I love about the team.

“In the end, it’s amazing. There is nothing more to say.”

Making City’s demolition derby even sweeter, both Foden and Haaland were City fans while growing up.

“It’s a dream come true playing in a derby being a City fan as well. It’s been a pleasure to be a part of this team,” Foden said.

Thanks in large part to Haaland’s blistering form, City sit just one point behind leaders Arsenal as they chase a fifth Premier League title in six seasons.

It was the first time United had conceded two hat-tricks in a top-flight match since a 6-0 defeat against Huddersfield in 1930.

Haaland and Foden were left to fight over the match ball — traditionally awarded to a hat-trick scorer in English football — as well as the man of the match award, which was given to both players.

“We can do one ball for the first half and one ball for the second half!” Foden said.

It was a chastening first experience of the Manchester derby for United midfielder Christian Eriksen and boss Erik ten Hag.

Eriksen made no excuses after United’s four-game winning run in the league came to a painful end.

“Everyone feels it was a very bad day at the office. We started on the wrong foot. They had chances straight from kick-off. We can only blame ourselves,” Eriksen said.

“We let them be at their strength. The main focus from this game will be on ourselves. There are a lot of things we need to change and a lot of things we need to do better.”

AFP

Haaland’s Dortmund Winner Reminds Guardiola Of Cruyff

Manchester City’s Norwegian striker Erling Haaland (2nd-L) celebrates his goal with teammates during the UEFA Champions League group G football match between England’s Manchester City and Germany’s Borussia Dortmund at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on September 14, 2022. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP)

 

Erling Haaland’s stunning acrobatic finish to beat his old club Borussia Dortmund 2-1 sparked comparisons from Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola with his mentor Johan Cruyff.

The Norwegian had been kept remarkably quiet, but only needed the slightest glimpse of goal to extend his scoring streak to six games as his telescopic left leg prodded home the winner six minutes from time.

Haaland has now scored 13 goals in nine games for City since they met his bargain 60 million euro ($60m, £52m) buyout clause from the German giants.

“Everyone knows how important a person Johan Cruyff was in my life. As a person, educator, mentor, everything,” said Guardiola. “He scored in Camp Nou an incredible goal against Atletico Madrid (in 1973) that was quite similar. The moment he (Haaland) scored, I thought of Cruyff.”

Haaland’s incredible flexibility despite his giant frame also drew comparisons from Guardiola to another former Barcelona striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Ibrahimovic endured one unhappy season under Guardiola at the Camp Nou, but has used an upbringing in martial arts to devastating effect during his long and storied career.

“I remember my dear friend Ibrahimovic had this ability to put his leg on the roof,” added Guardiola.

“Erling is quite similar. He’s elastic, flexible and after has the ability to put it in the net. He’s so big, but has this natural flexibility.”

Jude Bellingham had given Dortmund the lead 11 minutes into the second half.

But a triple substitution awoke City from their slumber and two goals in four minutes turned the game around.

John Stones’ piledriver from outside the box levelled with the aid of some poor goalkeeping from Alexander Meyer.

Haaland then took centre stage by somehow stretching to meet Joao Cancelo’s cross and beat Meyer at his near post.

“In the end, we showed what we are. This is how we have to play. I’m proud of the last 20, 25 minutes,” said Haaland.

“Two wonderful goals today –- mine was a bit better, honestly! It was a nice cross from Cancelo and in the end a really important win.”

The victory sees City open up a three-point lead at the top of Group G, with Dortmund still in second after FC Copenhagen and Sevilla played out a 0-0 draw in the Danish capital.

READ ALSOHaaland Haunts Dortmund As Man City Come From Behind

Bellingham shines 

Manchester City’s Norwegian striker Erling Haaland (2nd-L) celebrates his goal with teammates during the UEFA Champions League group G football match between England’s Manchester City and Germany’s Borussia Dortmund at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester on September 14, 2022. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP)

 

Bellingham admitted on the eve of the game he had no idea how Haaland can be stopped.

But the Germans did a good job of suffocating the service to their former star striker as the first 45 minutes passed with barely any goalmouth action to note.

“I think we were brilliant for the majority of the game,” said Bellingham. “We gave them little to work with.

“Great teams, you give them a yard and they can deliver like that, they can hurt you and that’s what they did tonight.”

Bellingham has been strongly linked with a move back to the Premier League with City, Manchester United, and Liverpool reportedly interested.

The England international was quick to shut down speculation over his future on Tuesday and may have added a few more millions to his price tag as he timed his run perfectly to head in Reus’ cross.

Guardiola responded immediately with a triple substitution as Bernardo Silva, Phil Foden and Julian Alvarez were called upon to add more guile in the final third.

When City’s equaliser did arrive, it came from an unlikely source as Stones blasted home his first Champions League goal since 2017 from outside the box.

Haaland was not to be denied the headlines, though, as Cancelo’s inventive cross with the outside of his right foot was pounced on by City’s giant number nine who raised his foot to head height to flick the ball home.

AFP

Haaland Alone Won’t Win Champions League For Man City – Guardiola

Haaland is one of the new signings expected to bring fireworks to the EPL. [email protected]

 

Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola said Monday the team cannot rely on Erling Haaland to single-handedly win them the Champions League this season following his remarkable start to life in England.

The Norway striker has scored 10 goals in his first six Premier League games since his £51 million ($58 million) move from Borussia Dortmund this summer.

“All the players who come here were brought here by the club to make us better, that makes sense,” said Guardiola ahead of Tuesday’s opening group game away to Sevilla.

“If we rely on Erling’s shoulders, we will not win the Champions League.”

City reached the semi-finals of last season’s competition before an astonishing comeback from Real Madrid cost them a shot at winning a first European title.

READ ALSOMan Utd Beat Arsenal At Old Trafford

The Premier League champions have brought in England midfielder Kalvin Phillips, Argentine striker Julian Alvarez and defenders Manuel Akanji and Sergio Gomez to strengthen the squad.

However the capture of Haaland was the headline deal, and one that Guardiola hopes can inspire City to the trophy in Istanbul next June.

“Hopefully, we can do it,” said Guardiola.

“He came here because we convinced him. We didn’t have strikers and he felt he could play with us.

“He has settled well, like with Julian and the other new players.

“I understand completely why everyone is talking about Erling but I have six new players and I want them to settle as quickly as possible.

“We won’t win just because of Erling but he has a special talent, and he can help us solve problems, definitely. But if we don’t play well, we will not win.”

City will be without defensive pair Kyle Walker and John Stones against Sevilla.

Walker limped off towards the end of Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Aston Villa, while Stones also picked up a minor knock.

“(They are) injured. John is not much. Kyle is not much too, but I don’t know if he will be ready for Saturday, or Dortmund or Wolves before the international break,” said Guardiola.

AFP

FIRST 11: Recovered United Eye Arsenal’s Winning Run+The Week’s Big Sports Stories

first-eleven-top-sports-stories
The week’s top sports stories. Illustration. Benjamin Kehinde.

 

Transfer deadline deals dominated much of the conversations in the sporting cycle this week. From England to Spain, it was fever-pitch high as clubs battled to shore up their squads for the marathon football season.  

But away from the transfer madness, there was pretty much to talk about in sports this week. Actions have continued in the US Open; the race for elective posts in the Nigeria Football Football Federation (NFF) has also heightened. The home-based Super Eagles team will hope to revert a 2-0 first leg defeat to Ghana in the qualification race for the 2023 Africa Nations Championship (CHAN). 

These and several others are covered in this edition of First 11, the weekly recap of major sports stories around the world. 


Eagles Go For Broke

The Super Eagles Team B now have an uphill task in the second leg next weekend. [email protected]

 

Starting from the home front, the Super Eagles Team B will be doing all to reverse a 2-0 loss to Ghana earlier in the week. Coach Salisu Yusuf’s Eagles had their wings clipped by the Black Galaxies in Ghana during the first leg qualification game for CHAN. And in Abuja, the Nigerians will hope for redemption when the second leg kicks off this weekend. 

Already, Super Eagles Team A coach Jose Peseiro has linked up with the side as Nigeria plot Ghana’s downfall. When the game begins on Saturday, millions of Nigerians will expect the home-based side to revenge the Super Eagles Team A’s World Cup qualification ouster in the hands of their perennial rivals. 


Parker Gets The Boot

In this file photo, former Bournemouth’s English head coach Scott Parker reacts after they concede their ninth goal during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Bournemouth at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on August 27, 2022. Liverpool won the game 9-0. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP)

 

Still on football but this time in the English Premier League where gaffer Scott Parker became the first casualty of the “sack race”. It took just four games into the new campaign for Bournemouth to dismiss Parker who led them back to the top flight.  A string of poor results (three losses and one win) in August including a 9-0 thumping against Liverpool, culminated in his sack. 

Former Bournemouth midfielder Gary O’Neil will take charge at the Vitality Stadium on an interim basis, the club said in a statement confirming Parker’s departure. 


EPL Catches Transfer Bug

In this file photo taken on August 12, 2017 The Premier league trophy sits beside the pitch ahead of the English Premier League football match between Brighton and Hove Albion and Manchester City at the American Express Community Stadium in Brighton. CHRIS J RATCLIFFE / AFP
In this file photo taken on August 12, 2017, the Premier league trophy sits beside the pitch ahead of the English Premier League football match between Brighton and Hove Albion and Manchester City at the American Express Community Stadium in Brighton. CHRIS J RATCLIFFE / AFP

 

And as the action intensifies across Europe’s top leagues, English Premier League sides have beefed up their squads for the marathon games. The summer football transfer ended Thursday night but Premier League sides achieved a feat in spending. The gross spending by teams in the first division was pegged at £1.9 billion ($2.1 billion).

This eclipsed the 2017 record of £1.43 billion spent in that transfer window. Signings by Chelsea, Newcastle, Manchester United, and Arsenal among others, contributed largely to this. Deloitte’s Sports Business Group estimated the gross spending by the 20 English top-flight clubs during the transfer window that ended on Thursday was the highest in the history of the competition.


Arsenal on Cloud Nine

Arsenal's Brazilian defender Gabriel Magalhaes (2R) celebrates scoring during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Fulham at the Emirates Stadium in London on August 27, 2022. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP)
Arsenal’s Brazilian defender Gabriel Magalhaes (2R) celebrates scoring during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Fulham at the Emirates Stadium in London on August 27, 2022. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP)

 

One of the teams responsible for the transfer feat, Arsenal, have also got many people talking. The Gunners are a revitalised side this season, winning their first five league games.

Mikel Arteta’s are on cloud nine, topping the league standings, two points ahead of holders Manchester City, a reality that strikingly contrasts their start to life last term. Arsenal were rooted to the bottom of the league after losing their first three matches last season but bounced back to push for a Champions League spot which they narrowly lost to London rivals Tottenham. 

Against Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday, Arsenal will have their biggest test so far in the campaign. Their opponents, having recovered from a sloppy start to the season – they lost their first two matches – have a chance to make it four wins out of four. But how they will neutralise the bullets from Arsenal’s blazing cannons is yet to be seen!


Hard to Handle Haaland Scores for Fun!

Haaland is one of the new signings expected to bring fireworks to the EPL. [email protected]

 

Arsenal’s latest win over Fulham at the Emirates Stadium came on the same day Manchester City brushed aside Nottingham Forest in a league game. That day, Norwegian striker Erling Haaland’s first-half hat trick set the tone for a 6-0 thumping of Forest.

He proved unplayable and has silenced critics who called him “white Lukaku” after a poor outing in the Community Shield against Liverpool. The former Borrusia Dortmund forward also scored a treble in City’s 4-2 victory over Crystal Palace. In just five league games, Haaland has scored eight goals and there is no guessing that the striker, who has had rave reviews over his performances, will be a nightmare to defenders in the months to follow. 


France Launches Probe

Mathias Pogba is linked with blackmailing his younger brother , Paul
In this file photo taken on December 29, 2019, the Pogba brothers, Manchester United and France midfielder Paul Pogba (C), Atlanta United defender Florentin Pogba (L), and CD Manchego midfielder Mathias Pogba (R), pose prior to a gala football match between All-Star France and Guinea at the Vallee du Cher Stadium in Tours, central France, as part of the “48h for Guinea” charity event. (Photo by GUILLAUME SOUVANT / AFP) /

 

Meanwhile, France on Friday launched a criminal investigation into claims by World Cup winner Paul Pogba that he is the victim of a multi-million euro blackmail plot by gangsters involving his brother, the Paris prosecutor said.

Two investigating magistrates have been appointed to lead the probe, prosecutor Laure Beccuau said in a statement. Based on the findings of a preliminary investigation launched last month it will examine allegations — for now against persons unknown — including blackmail by an armed gang, kidnapping, and membership of a criminal conspiracy, she said, confirming a weekend statement from a judicial source.


D’Tigers Caged!

File photo of D’Tigers Roster at the 3rd qualification window for the 2023 FIBA Basketball World Cup in Kigali.

 

Moving on to basketball! Nigeria’s D’Tigers failed to roar at the African qualification window for the 2023 FIBA World Cup. They were caged by Angola, 70-67, in the last game of the window on Sunday after winning and losing one game. Nigeria had beaten Guinea 89-70 after a first game loss, 78-66, to hosts Ivory Coast at the 3,500-capacity Palais des Sports Treichville. 

The results leave them in a tight corner ahead of the next qualification window. Four tickets are up for grabs for Africa after the Ivorians booked a slot for the basketball showpiece billed to run from August 25 to September 10, 2023, in Japan, Indonesia, and The Philippines.


Falcons Face US Test

Nigeria’s players pose for a group picture during the 2022 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations semi-final football match between Morocco and Nigeria at the Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium in Rabat on July 18, 2022. (Photo by AFP)

 

In football, the Super Falcons are up against the US in two international friendly games. They arrived in the US city of Kansas earlier in the week for matches which are part of preparations for the 2023 Women’s World Cup. 

Coach Randy Waldrum invited four of the ladies that reached the quarter-finals of the just-concluded FIFA Women’s U-20 World Cup to face the heavyweights. The first game of the two-match series is billed for Saturday at the Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City. On Tuesday, the second tie of the clash with the World Cup champions holds at the Audi Field in Washington. 


Peterside, Akinwunmi, Others Join NFF Race

Giwa Takes Control Of NFF As Dalung Asks Pinnick To Obey Court Order
A logo of the NFF.

 

As the Falcons battle the US, political activities are intensifying on the home front for elective posts in the NFF. President of the body Amaju Pinnick won’t be seeking re-election after two terms but the NFF first vice president Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi is among others contesting to replace him. 

Aside from Akinwunmi, a former international Peterside Idah has also joined the race alongside the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Head of Safety and Security Christian Emeruwa. A former NFF first vice president Amanze Uchegbulam has equally declared for the position. 

The presidential seat and other positions are up for grabs when the NFF congress holds later in the month in Benin City, Edo State.


Guinea Ready To Host Africa?

AFCON trophy.

 

On the continental scene, Guinea’s ruling junta has told a Confederation of African Football mission that it will meet the timetable for staging the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations (CAN).

CAF has sent a team to the poor and volatile West African state to assess its progress in hosting the tournament. Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, who appointed himself president after taking power in a coup in September 2021, met with the visiting experts on Wednesday.


No Farewell For Williams Sisters?

SA’s Serena Williams (R) and Venus Williams confer as they play against Czech Republic’s Lucie Hradecka and Linda Noskova during their 2022 US Open Tennis tournament women’s doubles first-round match at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York, on September 1, 2022. (Photo by COREY SIPKIN / AFP)

 

Heading to the court, Serena and Venus Williams’ glittering Grand Slam doubles career ended abruptly at the US Open as the reunited sisters crashed out in the first round against Czech duo Lucie Hradecka and Linda Noskova.

The Americans in what is almost certainly their final outing together as a Grand Slam doubles duo — slumped to a 7-6 (7/5), 6-4 loss at the Arthur Ashe Stadium on Thursday. The Williams sisters – winners of 14 Grand Slam crowns and three Olympic gold medals — had not played together in a doubles tournament since 2018.


FIRST 11 is a weekly recap of some of the big sports stories told in a condensed form.


 

Man City Fight Back To Salvage Draw Against Newcastle

Newcastle United’s Swiss defender Fabian Schar (L) fights for the ball with Manchester City’s Norwegian striker Erling Haaland (C) during the English Premier League football match between Newcastle United and Manchester City at St James’ Park in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, north east England, on August 21, 2022. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP)

 

Erling Haaland helped Manchester City fight back from 3-1 down to salvage a 3-3 draw from an enthralling encounter at Newcastle on Sunday.

Despite Ilkay Gundogan’s early opener for City, Newcastle had the champions on the ropes as goals from Miguel Almiron, Callum Wilson and Kieran Trippier had St. James’ Park rocking.

But Haaland sparked the revival when he fired home his third goal since joining from Borussia Dortmund before Bernardo Silva’s equaliser extended City’s unbeaten start to the season.

Pep Guardiola’s men move up to second, two points adrift of Arsenal, but missed the chance to open up a seven-point advantage on Liverpool ahead of their trip to Manchester United on Monday.

Newcastle have not splashed the cash of the Saudi sovereign wealth fund to the extent expected in the transfer window with Nick Pope, Matt Targett, and Sven Botman the only signings made by the Magpies.

But they showed they are now a force to be reckoned with, even for the Premier League’s elite, by pushing City to the limit.

READ ALSOMendy Howler Sends Chelsea Crashing To Leeds Defeat

Manchester City’s Spanish manager Pep Guardiola reacts during the English Premier League football match between Newcastle United and Manchester City at St James’ Park in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, northeast England, on August 21, 2022. (Photo by Lindsey Parnaby / AFP)

 

Newcastle had taken four points from their opening two games without conceding a goal.

That record was wiped out within five minutes as City quickly took control.

Silva was recalled to Pep Guardiola’s starting line-up for the first time in the Premier League this season with the midfielder linked with a move to Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain.

The Portuguese international made an immediate impact as his cross was controlled and finished by Gundogan.

Pope then had to make good stops with his feet from Kevin De Bruyne and Phil Foden to keep his side in the game.

But Newcastle’s intensity and energy soon swarmed over City with the pace of Allan Saint-Maximin causing havoc.

Almiron blasted over a glorious chance from Saint-Maximin’s cross before Wilson should have done better than a tame shot into the arms of Ederson when a corner broke his way.

Newcastle’s pressure finally got its reward on 28 minutes and it was a sweet moment for Almiron, who was mocked by Jack Grealish during City’s title celebrations at the end of last season.

The Paraguayan’s finish was unorthodox as Saint-Maximin’s cross came off his thigh to leave Ederson with no chance.

Saint-Maximin was the creator again as Newcastle turned the game around before half-time as Wilson latched onto his pass and prodded beyond Ederson.

Haaland had been kept quiet before the break but exploded into life with the smallest glimpse of an opportunity in the second half and came within inches of an equaliser as his fierce low shot was turned onto the post by Pope.

Moments later, City looked destined for a first Premier League defeat since February when Trippier curled a brilliant free-kick into the top corner after John Stones resorted to hauling down Saint-Maximin on the edge of the box.

Haaland’s predatory instincts were on full show as he started the comeback by firing into the roof of the net when Rodri knocked a set-piece back across goal.

The Norwegian then showed the other side to his game as his electric pace burst onto De Bruyne’s through ball and forced Pope to come flying off this line to block.

De Bruyne’s next defence-splitting pass did lead to the equaliser as Silva produced a composed finish to level at 3-3.

The drama did not end there, even if the scoring did, as Trippier had a straight red card for a late lunge on De Bruyne reduced to a yellow after a VAR review.

But City failed to turn their momentum into a winner in the closing stages as they blinked for the first time in their title defence.

AFP

Haaland’s Debut Double Gives Man City Winning Start To EPL Title Defence

Manchester City’s Norwegian striker Erling Haaland (L) celebrates with teammates after scoring their second goal during the English Premier League football match between West Ham United and Manchester City at the London Stadium, in London on August 7, 2022. (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS / AFP

Erling Haaland scored twice on his Premier League debut as Manchester City opened their defence of the title with a 2-0 win at West Ham on Sunday.

Haaland lived up to the hype since his transfer from Borussia Dortmund to give the champions a perfect start to the season in the searing heat of East London.

West Ham nearly derailed City’s title chances when they led 2-0 at half-time in the penultimate game of last season before Pep Guardiola’s men battled back for the point that ultimately edged out Liverpool at the top of the table.

But they were no match this time as Haaland immediately proved the value of City adding a proven goalscorer to their arsenal.

The Norwegian has been signed as the long-term successor to Sergio Aguero and started his City career just like the club’s all-time record goalscorer with a double on his league debut.

READ ALSO: Spineless Man United Slump To Brighton At Old Trafford

Haaland had missed chances in City’s 3-1 defeat to Liverpool in the Community Shield, but Guardiola’s warning that the goals would soon flow proved to be correct.

City’s patient possession game wore the Hammers down as temperatures in the English capital soared above 30 degrees celsius on Sunday.

Haaland took responsibility from the penalty spot to open his Premier League account after he had been brought down by Alphonse Areola.

West Ham started the second half with more attacking intent but that simply played into the hands of City’s new weapon as Kevin De Bruyne split open their defence with one pass on the counter-attack for Haaland to gallop clear on goal and slot low past Areola.

AFP

Haaland Satisfies Man City’s Need For A Striker And Status

In this file photo, Dortmund’s Norwegian forward Erling Braut Haaland applauds after the German first division Bundesliga football match Borussia Dortmund v VfL Wolfsburg in Dortmund, western Germany, on April 16, 2022. INA FASSBENDER / AFP

 

Manchester City are still licking their wounds from another painful Champions League exit, but by winning the race to sign Erling Haaland they have established themselves as a go-to destination for Europe’s top talent.

The 21-year-old goalscoring phenomenon had his choice of the continent’s top clubs thanks to a reported buyout clause of 60 million euros (£51 million, $63 million) that will see him leave Borussia Dortmund well below his market value.

Real Madrid wanted to pair the Norwegian with Kylian Mbappe at the Bernabeu next season, Barcelona sought him as a successor to Lionel Messi, while Bayern Munich again aimed to swoop on their Bundesliga rivals.

Haaland, however, will instead line up in City blue next season, just as his father Alf-Inge did between 2000-2003 during a very different era for the club.

READ ALSO: Guardiola Hints Man City Closing In On Haaland Deal

The arrival of petrodollars from Abu Dhabi has long since transformed City’s fortunes, with Pep Guardiola’s men now on the brink of a fourth Premier League title in five seasons.

But Haaland is the man City need to fill a void if they are to reach the next level — a superstar striker.

City have played the best part of two seasons without a recognised number nine.

An attempt to land Harry Kane as Sergio Aguero’s successor fell short last summer and it may have cost City another shot at Champions League glory.

Despite beating Real Madrid 4-2 in the first leg of their semi-final, Guardiola’s men missed a series of sitters to put the tie to bed.

That came back to haunt them last week as Real miraculously hauled themselves off the floor to score twice in the final seconds of the second leg and set up a final against Liverpool, City’s nearest challengers for the Premier League trophy.

Haaland, however has scored 23 goals in just 19 Champions League appearances for Salzburg and Dortmund.

City Future-Proofing

What remains to be seen is how well he can be embedded into Guardiola’s system.

League titles won with Samuel Eto’o at Barcelona, Robert Lewandowski in his time at Bayern Munich and Aguero in his early years at City dispells the notion Guardiola’s football cannot accommodate a number nine.

But the recent story of City’s success under the Catalan coach has been one of collective brilliance.

Riyad Mahrez is their top scorer with 24 goals in all competitions this season, ahead of Raheem Sterling (16), Kevin De Bruyne (15) and Phil Foden (14).

Not all superstar signings have gone as planned for Guardiola in the past.

Haaland’s arrival has sparked comparisons with Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s ill-fated season at Barcelona in 2009/10.

And Jack Grealish, despite costing City £100 million to make him the most expensive player in English football history, has spent much of this season on the bench.

But by landing one of Europe’s hottest properties, City are also looking to a future beyond Guardiola, whose current contract runs out in 2023.

Now they will have at least one season together to try to satisfy City’s desperate desire for a first Champions League title.

AFP

Man City Agree To Sign Dortmund Striker Haaland

In this file photo, Dortmund’s Norwegian forward Erling Braut Haaland and Dortmund’s US midfielder Giovanni Reyna (L) warm up before the German first division Bundesliga football match Borussia Dortmund v Arminia Bielefeld in Dortmund, western Germany, on March 13, 2022. (Photo by Ina FASSBENDER / AFP)

 

Manchester City announced Tuesday they had reached an agreement to sign star striker Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund — sending an ominous statement of intent to their rivals.

The Norwegian international will move to the Etihad after the Premier League champions agreed to pay his reported 60-million-euro (£51 million, $63 million) release clause.

“Manchester City can confirm we have reached an agreement in principle with Borussia Dortmund for the transfer of striker Erling Haaland to the club on 1st July 2022,” the club said in a statement.

“The transfer remains subject to the club finalising terms with the player.”

READ ALSO: Guardiola Hints Man City Closing In On Haaland Deal

The deal for the towering 21-year-old ends City’s long search for a specialist striker to replace record goalscorer Sergio Aguero, who left last year.

The club failed in a high-profile attempt to prise England captain Harry Kane away from Tottenham Hotspur last summer.

Haaland, whose father Alf-Inge played for City from 2000 to 2003, has been sensational since joining Dortmund from RB Salzburg in January 2020, scoring 85 goals in 88 appearances for the German side.

Speculation linking City with Haaland had been gathering momentum in recent weeks, with reports on Monday claiming the player had already undergone a medical.

Manager Pep Guardiola was reluctant to discuss the situation in a press conference on Tuesday to preview Wednesday’s game at Wolves, but all but suggested a deal was imminent.

“Everybody knows the situation, but I should not talk because I do not like to talk about the future, next season,” he said.

“At the same time I should say something, but Borussia Dortmund and Man City told me I’m not allowed to say anything until the deal is completely done, so I cannot talk. I’m sorry. We’ll have time to talk.”

But after Haaland’s in-principle move was announced, City centre-back Aymeric Laporte tweeted: “Happy not to be running after this guy for the next couple of years. Welcome Erling.”

Top-scorers 

City, who are the Premier League’s top-scorers this season with 89 goals, have often played without a recognised striker for the past two seasons.

Riyad Mahrez is their top scorer with 24 goals in all competitions, ahead of Raheem Sterling (16), Kevin De Bruyne (15) and Phil Foden (14).

Guardiola was keen to play down the significance of any one new signing.

He said: “We have a number nine right now. New players always help us try to be a stronger team, but a good defender will not solve our defensive problems and one striker will not resolve the scoring problems that maybe we have.

“We have always been consistent, scoring a lot of goals and conceding few. The stats are there, we are stable in those terms but the club always has to have a vision for the future.

“That’s why with the decisions the club takes, I’m always completely aware and supportive 100 percent.”

City, who lead Liverpool on goal difference at the top of the Premier League table and have a game in hand, are closing in on a fourth English league title in five years.

But they suffered a painful exit from the Champions League last week, losing 6-5 on aggregate to semi-final opponents Real Madrid.

For all Guardiola’s success in six years at the Etihad, his inability to conquer Europe is seen as a failure.

Haaland’s predatory instincts could be the missing ingredient to take City’s domestic dominance onto the Champions League stage.

“They have done fantastically well without having a top striker and now they have a top striker so you can only imagine what they will be like now,” former Manchester United and Norway defender Henning Berg told the BBC.

“As a number nine, as a goalscorer you cannot go to a better team because they get the ball in the box so many times.”

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp described Haaland as a “beast”.

“He’s a good player but City was never and will never be a team that wins games because of one player,” said Klopp after Liverpool’s 2-1 win at Aston Villa kept the pressure on City at the top of the Premier League.

“He’s a real beast, so unfortunately a really good signing.”

AFP

Haaland’s Late Winner For Dortmund Delays Bayern Munich Title Party

Dortmund's Norwegian forward Erling Braut Haaland (2nd L, no 17) scores the 0-1 during the German first division Bundesliga football match Fortuna Duesseldorf v Borussia Dortmund on June 13, 2020 in Duesseldorf, western Germany. LEON KUEGELER / POOL / AFP
Dortmund’s Norwegian forward Erling Braut Haaland (2nd L, no 17) scores the 0-1 during the German first division Bundesliga football match Fortuna Duesseldorf v Borussia Dortmund on June 13, 2020 in Duesseldorf, western Germany. LEON KUEGELER / POOL / AFP

 

Erling Braut Haaland came off the bench to score a spectacular 95th-minute winner for Borussia Dortmund in their 1-0 victory at Fortuna Duesseldorf on Saturday that kept Bayern Munich waiting for an eighth straight Bundesliga title.

Dortmund were heading towards a frustrating draw at relegation-threatened Fortuna when Haaland headed home Manuel Akanji’s cross seconds from time to score his 11th goal in 12 league games.

The result leaves second-placed Dortmund four points behind leaders Bayern, who host fourth-placed Borussia Moenchengladbach later Saturday.

Haaland, 19, came on with half an hour left and was involved in the build-up when Raphael Guerreiro had a 65th-minute goal disallowed after the VAR spotted the Portuguese international had played the ball with his upper arm.

However, with time almost up, Haaland leapt to flick his header into the Fortuna net for his 14th goal for Dortmund in 15 games since joining from Red Bull Salzburg in January.

Dortmund had endured a nervous final 10 minutes before Haaland struck as Duesseldorf substitute  Steven Skrzybski twice hit the post and fired wide.

Duesseldorf’s defeat boosted second-from-bottom Werder Bremen, who are now level with Fortuna on 28 points following their 5-1 thumping of bottom side Paderborn.

With Bundesliga matches played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus pandemic, home advantage again counted for little with four victories going to the away team in the afternoon’s five games.

Lifeline for Bremen

Bremen responded to back-to-back home defeats with an emphatic away victory in pouring rain as Davy Klaassen netted either side of a goal by Japanese forward Yuya Osako to make it 3-0 at half-time.

It could have been 4-0 as Bremen forward Milot Rashica had a penalty saved.

Midfielder Maximilian Eggestein made it 4-0 with an hour gone before Paderborn’s Moroccan-born substitute Abdelhamid Sabiri scored their consolation goal.

Just 15 minutes after coming on for his first appearance for nine months after tearing knee ligaments, Bremen striker Niclas Fuellkrug capped a fairytale return when he slotted home the fifth goal on 90 minutes.

With three games left to stay up, Bremen host Bayern on Tuesday, then Mainz, who are also fighting to survive, and mid-table Cologne.

Ten-man Hertha Berlin were thumped 4-1 at home by Eintracht Frankfurt after their Belgium defender Dedryck Boyata was sent off on the stroke of half-time for bringing down Bas Dost, who was through on goal.

Krzysztof Piatek gave Hertha an early lead at Berlin’s Olympic Stadium, but Frankfurt roared back with unanswered goals by Dost, two from Portuguese forward Andre Silva and French defender Evan Ndicka.

Freiburg came from two goals down to earn a 2-2 draw at Wolfsburg in a game dominated by VAR.

Wolfsburg raced into a 2-0 lead inside 30 minutes when Dutch striker Wout Weghorst finished off a sweeping move, then converted a penalty.

Weghorst also had his head heavily bandaged after an accidental kick in the face.

Wolfsburg had two goals by Daniel Ginczek ruled out by the VAR and it finished 2-1 at half-time as Freiburg pulled a goal back through midfielder Lucas Hoefler.

Hungarian Roland Sallai equalised just after the break.

After picking up just two points in their previous five games since the Bundesliga restart in mid-May, FC Union got their fist win since February with a 2-1 win at Cologne.

Goals by defender Marvin Friedrich and midfielder Christian Gentner sealed the victory which pulled Union up to 13th, seven points from the bottom three.

Haaland Scores First Post-Lockdown Goal In Bundesliga

Dortmund's Norwegian forward Erling Braut Haaland celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the German first division Bundesliga football match BVB Borussia Dortmund v Schalke 04 on May 16, 2020 in Dortmund, western Germany as the season resumed following a two-month absence due to the novel coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. Martin Meissner / POOL / AFP
Dortmund’s Norwegian forward Erling Braut Haaland celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the German first division Bundesliga football match BVB Borussia Dortmund v Schalke 04 on May 16, 2020 in Dortmund, western Germany as the season resumed following a two-month absence due to the novel coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. Martin Meissner / POOL / AFP

 

The setting may be unfamiliar with the German Bundesliga returning behind closed doors after a two-month coronavirus shutdown, but the identity of the day’s first goal-scorer was entirely familiar as Erling Braut Haaland put Borussia Dortmund ahead against Schalke on Saturday.

Haaland diverted a low Thorgan Hazard cross into the far corner of the net in the 29th minute for the first goal of the five matches kicking off on Saturday afternoon on the long-awaited comeback of top-flight football in Europe.

It was the 10th goal in nine Bundesliga appearances for the prolific 19-year-old Norwegian striker, who moved to Dortmund from Red Bull Salzburg in the winter.

Usually the scorer of the first goal in the Ruhr derby — one of the biggest fixtures in German football — could expect to be mobbed by his teammates.

On this occasion, though, Haaland’s colleagues respected social distancing recommendations and avoided getting too close as they applauded the smiling and dancing goal-scorer.

Haaland also had a hand in the second goal, forcing Schalke goalkeeper Markus Schubert into a poor clearance which led to Raphael Guerreiro making it 2-0 just before half-time.

A Dortmund win would leave them a point behind leaders Bayern Munich, who play on Sunday.