Haaland risked Man City fans’ wrath by admitting role model was ex-Man Utd star

Erling Haaland is set to become a new fan favourite amongst Manchester City fans – but it is a former Man United man who the striker sensation admired watching.

Haaland has admitted that Zlatan Ibrahmovic, who spent two seasons at Old Trafford between 2016 and 2018, was his football role model growing up. And the Norway international's Scandinavian connection to the Swede has inspired him to become the goalscoring machine he is today.

“I had a lot of role models and looked up to many footballers, but Zlatan is the biggest one,” Haaland told Norwegian channel TV2 in 2019. “The way he became so good, the way he plays.

"For me, Zlatan is the biggest. He is from Scandinavia, so someone has to take over from him." Haaland has a long way to go to emulate Ibrahimovic's legendary career, but he's almost ticked one box by following him to the Premier League with his summer move to City all but done.

In the same interview, Haaland added: "I have dreamed of playing for the best clubs in the world my whole life, and I especially like English football."

Who was your football role model? Let us know in the comments section.

City fans probably won't care who Haaland likes and doesn't like as long as he continues his fine form in front of goal which has seen him score 85 times in 88 games for Borussia Dortmund. However, other comments he's made about Ibrahimovic may be a concern.

In a 2020 interview with FourFourTwo, the 21-year-old said he likes how his role model "moves from one club to another" – suggesting he won't be hanging around in Manchester for long. "I like his mentality and how he sees different things, I think I've always had that confidence too – that's just me," Haaland claimed.

"I also like how he moves from one club to another, in another country – which isn't easy – but he always comes in and just bangs in goals, from the first second. I liked seeing that. We're both strikers and we're both tall. But we have a different game. It's hard to compare us. I am who I am."

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