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E. Haaland

Does Haaland dream of winning the Ballon d’Or? Man City striker discusses Golden Ball bid

7:53 AM EST 1/17/23
Erling Haaland Ballon d'Or
Erling Haaland admits that winning the Ballon d’Or is one of his long-term goals, but the Manchester City striker is not fixated on individual prizes.
  • Norwegian striker one of the most prolific
  • Has starred in Austria, Germany & England
  • Expected to define an era alongside Mbappe

WHAT HAPPENED? The enigmatic Norway international is expected to put himself in contention for future Golden Balls, with his remarkable exploits in 2022-23 seeing 27 goals recorded for City through just 24 appearances. He has previously been as prolific at Red Bull Salzburg and Borussia Dortmund, with many tipping him to dominate the global scene alongside Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe in the years to come.

WHAT THEY SAID: If stunning standards can be maintained then the most prestigious of accolades should come his way, but Haaland has told GQ Magazine when asked if he cares about the Ballon d’Or: “I think everybody cares. But I don’t think it’s a good thing to think about this. If you and your team are playing really well, you will perform well, you will begin to win trophies, [and] you will probably be on the list. Like [Kevin] De Bruyne was – he was third place, I think well deserved, by the way. But yeah, you cannot think of these kinds of things.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Haaland added on time being very much on his side when it comes to being recognised as the best player on the planet, with 2022 Ballon d’Or winner Karim Benzema proving that success can be earned in what are supposedly the latter stages of a distinguished career: “Look at Benzema, he is 35 now and I think even better. So in 12 years I hope to be even better than I am now.”

IN THREE PHOTOS:

WHAT NEXT? For now, Haaland is focused on claiming a first piece of silverware with City and admits that the Champions League is a top target for the Blues as they wait on securing a maiden continental crown since Sheikh Mansour completed his takeover of the club and made them serious challenges on a European stage.