Manchester City unveil coveted superstar Haaland
Reigning Premier League champions Manchester City have announced the signing of Norwegian striker Erling Haaland on a five-year deal.
An agreement to acquire the 21-year-old's services from Borussia Dortmund was made in May after City activated his £51.2 million ($62.5 million) release clause.
On Monday, however, with Haaland fresh off a brace in a 3-2 Nations League win over Sweden for his country, the son of former Sky Blues player Alfie Haaland has finally been unveiled by the Abu Dhabi-backed giants.
In an interview to the club's official site, life-long City fan Erling Haaland spoke of a "proud day" for him and his family.
"I have always watched City and have loved doing so in recent seasons. You can’t help but admire their style of play, it’s exciting and they create a lot of chances, which is perfect for a player like me," he added.
Haaland stated that he believes he is in the right place to fulfill his ambitions given that there are "so many world-class players" in the City squad who are commanded by "one of the greatest managers of all time" in Pep Guardiola.
Above all, Haaland wants to "score goals, win trophies and improve as a footballer", and is confident he can do that at the Etihad.
"This is a great move for me and I can’t wait to get started in pre-season," he concluded.
Netting an astonishing 86 times in 89 appearances for Dortmund, Haaland, who City described as one of the world's "most coveted forwards", should manage to find the goals he craves in northwestern England plus the silverware too given that City have won four of the last five Premier League titles on offer.
City's Director of Football Txiki Begiristain said that the club had been monitoring Haaland "for several years now", and called him a "huge talent" that has been one of Europe's best strikers over the last few seasons.
Pointing to his goalscoring record, City have been impressed by his performances in the Champions League and said that he has "everything we want in a striker".
The arrival of Haaland ends City's search for a long-term successor to the club's all-time top scorer Sergio Aguero, who left last summer before having to retire following a heart scare at FC Barcelona.
It could also accelerate the expected departure of Gabriel Jesus, who has been linked to Arsenal, Real Madrid, and Chelsea.
With Haaland still yet to be assigned a number, he could take the Brazil international's number '9' before the start of the 2022/2023 season if Jesus does indeed depart.
On Twitter, England legend and pundit Gary Lineker noted that Haaland's signing is a "seminal moment for the Premier League" as, for the first time, a young superstar "sought by all" has chosen an English outfit over "Spanish giants" such as Real Madrid or Barcelona.
With Kylian Mbappe turning down Los Blancos to renew terms at PSG until 2025 as well, it is easy to see why new money clubs such as the Parisians and City are considered a threat to the balance of power in elite European football.