Erling Haaland ‘will end up in the Premier League’ says mentor Jan Age Fjortoft as he reveals Mino Raiola ‘helped find an excuse’ for Norwegian starlet NOT to go to Manchester United in January
- Jan Age Fjortoft says Erling Haaland will eventually come to the Premier League
- The Dortmund sensation was strong linked with Manchester United in January
- His tally of 41 goals in 36 games so far this season has catapulted him to the top
- Fjortoft revealed agent Mino Raiola ‘helped find an excuse’ to not move to United
Borussia Dortmund starlet Erling Haaland will eventually come to the Premier League, former Norwegian footballer turned pundit Jan Aage Fjortoft has claimed.
The youngster is one of the most in-demand players in world football thanks to a sublime breakout season that has seem him score 41 goals in 36 appearances for Red Bull Salzburg and Dortmund.
A host of Europe’s elite clubs, including Manchester United, were keen on signing Haaland in January but he chose to head to the Bundesliga instead.
Jan Aage Fjortoft believes Erling Haaland will eventually end up playing in the Premier League
The Dortmund sensation is wanted by all of Europe’s top clubs after bursting onto the scene
A former player of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Molde, many expect United to be at the front of the queue again when Haaland decides the time has come from him to move away from Dortmund.
And Fjortoft, a friend of Haaland’s father Alf-Inge and a mentor to the youngster, believes there is no doubt the prodigy will end up in the Premier League.
Speaking on The Football Show on Sky Sports, Fjortoft said: ‘What he’s done is they’ve always chosen the places he can develop as a player.
‘He went from Molde with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to Red Bull Salzburg because they had a great arena for a young kid and not Juventus, where he had a great offer.
‘Then he went to Dortmund because it was the right place for him now.
‘He will go to the Premier League I think eventually but it will take him time. It went quicker for him at Salzburg than he thought but he’s at a good place now.
‘I can’t see him moving short-term but he will end up in the Premier League.’
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wanted Haaland to move to Old Trafford to bolster his striking options
But United rejected the demands of Haaland’s representatives, including agent Mino Raiola
Solskjaer was in the market for a striker after selling Romelu Lukaku in the summer and ongoing injury concerns with Marcus Rashford. They eventually brought in Odion Ighalo on loan.
But while Fjortoft praised the influence Haaland’s father has had on his career so far, the former Swindon and Middlesbrough striker believes his agent, Mino Raiola, helped find an ‘excuse’ to turn down United earlier this year.
Sportsmail reported at the time of the transfer that United rejected the demands of Haaland’s representatives, Raiola and father Alf-Inge, because they wanted a significant share of the player’s future sales value.
It would also have meant Raiola controlling Haaland’s next transfer, and the Old Trafford hierarchy were not prepared to agree to that.
Fjortoft added: ‘His family background overall is playing a big part. He’s a good lad. Alf-Inge has been good at talking about developing the player and looking around for people who could help him out.
‘When they took Raiola on he helped find an excuse for him not to go to Manchester. I think Alf-Inge has been good so he’s now thinking how he can improve. He was a tough guy on the pitch and he’s got that into Erling as well.
‘He is playing a major part for him and the team they’ve built around him are local people from Norway.’
Haaland wheels away after scoring against Schalke on the Bundesliga’s return on May 16
Haaland was the subject of criticism on social media last week after footage of some of his post-match interviews led some to question his attitude.
Fjortoft insisted there is nothing to worry about, saying: ‘I think it’s fair that you talk about his interviews and judge them but he’s 19. There’s a lot of things to analyse.
‘The clip that came out was 11 seconds of a great interview. Before coronavirus I saw all his games and 99 per cent of them interviewed him after. He was born in England and has taken that humour with him.
‘It’s sometimes hard for the journalists to adjust but if you ask him a yes or no question then you’re going to get a yes or no answer.
‘He’s got a fantastic attitude, he loves football and will do everything he can to improve himself and I’m sure the team around him will learn from how he does his interviews and the reactions across the world.’
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