Record-breaker Erling Haaland – Manchester City's goal machine
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Casemiro and Erling Haaland moved to different sides of the same city last year but have enjoyed a similar level of success in the Premier League over the course of their respective spells in England. The former was snapped up by Manchester United towards the end of the summer transfer window and has been one of their most important players under the guidance of Ten Hag, while Haaland has already banged in 37 goals in all competitions for Manchester City and looks to be in contention to beat Andy Cole’s existing Premier League record of 34 in one season.
Both players have enjoyed two of the most impressive debut seasons that England’s top flight has ever seen, but where do they match up in comparison to the other contenders? Express Sport takes a look at some of the options…
N’Golo Kante – Leicester City (2015/16)
Leicester City’s move for N’Golo Kante went under the radar in the summer of 2015 but the Foxes would soon reap the rewards of having the diminutive Frenchman in their ranks given his role in shaping their historic Premier League title win at the end of his first season. Kante was only signed for around £5.6million from Caen but quickly went on to establish himself among the division’s very best midfielders, featuring in all but one of Leicester’s league games on their way to securing domestic glory.
They only managed to keep hold of Kante for that season, with Chelsea swooping in to bring him to Stamford Bridge for £32m in 2016 before his career took off by winning the World Cup two years later and the Champions League with the Blues in 2021.
Michu – Swansea City (2012/13)
Michu was a relative unknown when he joined Swansea from Rayo Vallecano back in 2012 but went on to become one of the Premier League’s greatest one-season wonders by scoring 18 league goals in his debut campaign. Things did not go so well for the Spaniard following his first year at the Swans, although his free-scoring exploits for the club will live long in the memory of their supporters for decades to come.
He also managed to inspire the next generation of footballers during his imperious first year at Swansea, with Haaland previously revealing that he considers Michu as one of his favourite players.
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Fernando Torres – Liverpool (2007/08)
Fernando Torres’ move to Liverpool from Atletico Madrid in 2007 was met with no shortage of excitement from Reds fans and for good reason, with the forward simply unplayable at times during his first year on Merseyside. He also set a number of records as he became the first player to score 20 goals for Liverpool in a league campaign since Robbie Fowler and the first to bag a hat-trick in successive home matches since 1946.
Torres did not manage to win any trophies during his time at Anfield, but his emergence as arguably the Premier League’s most formidable striker at least gave the Reds faithful a new hero to rival Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United.
Sergio Aguero – Manchester City (2011/12)
It was evident that Sergio Aguero was going to be a special player for Manchester City after just one game, when he tore Swansea apart at the Etihad Stadium in their Premier League opener back in 2011. He went on to take English football by the scruff of the neck over the following months as he was prolific against virtually every side in the league, even scoring in his very first Manchester derby against United.
Aguero’s tally of 23 goals in the Premier League included his stunning final-day strike against Queens Park Rangers that has since gone down in history as City’s greatest ever moment.
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Mohamed Salah – Liverpool (2017/18)
Mohamed Salah returned to the Premier League with a point to prove when he joined Liverpool in the summer of 2017 following a sub-par stint at Chelsea, where he failed to make an impact before turning a corner with Roma. The Egyptian wizard promptly silenced his doubters with an unprecedented haul of 32 goals, which marked a new top-flight record in a 38-game season.
Salah played in an intriguing role that saw him deployed neither as a true winger or a centre-forward, but he was still able to score every type of goal imaginable and even won the Puskas Award for his incredible solo effort against Everton at Anfield.
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