Arsenal and Liverpool missed out on Erling Haaland due to a scouting error. The Norwegian international has lit up the Premier League since joining Manchester City in the summer.
The 22-year-old followed in his father’s footsteps by joining Man City for £50million. The forward has scored 12 goals in seven Premier League and Champions League games.
Pep Guardiola praises his blazing start at his new team “Numbers tell all. He’s constantly there, not only for the two Champions League goals.
“He could always score more goals. Even with past teams, his numbers are consistent. He’s goal-oriented.”
Haaland’s arrival provides City a definite advantage, but it also helped Arsenal land Gabriel Jesus. The Brazilian, who arrived for £45m to fix the club’s center-forward issues, has also made a good start.
Arsenal and Liverpool may have signed Haaland from Molde FK. John Vik told the Athletic that English scouts made one mistake that cost them a deal.
“Because he was so huge, I assume English scouts considered him a target. I recall telling the team in Spain, “He’s not a target man; if you judge him that way, you’ll be disappointed.”
“I told my Premier League colleagues, “Don’t assess him as a target man, go beyond that.” He sprints between, pursues space, and is great in the box.’
“Am I the one who’s wrong? Am I misunderstanding? Some English clubs believe a striker and a center-back must look a specific way, and you need a certain physique for a given function.
“They saw Erling as a target man and forgot about his other skills. Liverpool was interested. Arsenal was interested.”
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is linked to both Molde and Manchester United, according to Vik. If athletes like Haaland aren’t to slip through the cracks, scouting may need to change.