Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has confessed that he is keeping a close eye on the development of Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland.
Since moving to Germany, Haaland has racked up 38 goals in just 40 appearances – form which has seen the Norway international linked with a big-money move to a number of Europe’s top sides, including United, who were beaten to his signature by Dortmund in January 2020.
Solskjaer knows Haaland better than most, having worked with the young striker during their mutual time with Molde, but he refused to be drawn when asked whether United will try to lure Haaland over to Old Trafford.
“It is clear that Erling will have a fantastic career,” Solskjaer told VG. “I’m following Erling. I’ve always said that.
“Was it 18 months we had together or something? Almost two years, maybe. A wonderful time. He will definitely have a great career for both Norway and his club. He is doing incredibly well for Dortmund, so we’ll see where he ends up. As a Norwegian and someone who has worked with him, it is of course fun that he does so well.
“We will do what we can to become a better team. He will do what he can to become a better player. Where does he end up? I do not want to say anything other than that. I wish him all the best. Whatever choice he makes is up to him.”
Solskjaer’s close relationship with Haaland is often rumoured to be an advantage for United in their pursuit of the 20-year-old, and Solskjaer took the chance to reminisce about the game that really saw Haaland announce himself on the senior stage.
It was a meeting with Norwegian league-leaders Brann in July 2018, before which Haaland had just two goals in his last 18 games. After a chat with Solskjaer, he fired home four goals inside just 21 minutes.
“I reckon that Erling remembers when we sat on Lubbenes [Molde’s training field] the day before the Brann match,” Solskjaer began. “I felt it was an important day both for Molde, for him and for our relationship.
“He had a very bad period before that. He probably remembers that himself. It’s great to be with him. He will have a long, long, long career that will surpass most of what Norwegian football players have experienced.”