Everton supporters may be left with a sense of ‘what could have been’ when it was discovered that the Toffees turned down a £60,000 offer to recruit Erling Haaland.
The 21-year-old Erling Haaland signed a five-year, £385,000-per-week contract with Manchester City. This was after completing a £51 million transfer from Borussia Dortmund.
Since arriving for Dortmund in January 2020, Haaland’s status has risen dramatically, with 86 goals in 89 games.
However, in 2016, the striker was only 15 years old and played at the Bryne FC academy in western Norway.
Everton’s Scandinavian scout Bryan King kept an eye on him. Moreover, he recommended Haaland for a trial, but the club turned him down.
‘We could have had him for £60,000 in compensation,’ King said. ‘However, the opinion was that because he was so young and so huge, he’d lose his usefulness as he grew older and other players grew larger as well. ‘ That, however, has not occurred. He’s just gotten more strong, faster, and better.’
The Toffees kept an eye on Haaland, and then-director of football Steve Walsh – who scouted Riyad Mahrez, Jamie Vardy, and N’Golo Kante for Leicester – even had a £3.4 million agreement in place for the Norwegian. However, owner Farhad Moshiri was not on board.
Haaland, who was born in Leeds and whose father Alf-Inge played for Nottingham Forest, Leeds, and Manchester City, appeared destined for the Premier League from the start.
On Saturday, he scored a penalty in Dortmund’s 2-1 win over Hertha Berlin. Apparently, this was his final game for the club.
Before the game, there was a ceremony to honor the 21-year-departure, old’s with Dortmund supporters screaming his name.
Afterward, Haaland wrote, “It has been nothing but an honor to wear this shirt.”
‘At [Dortmund], I had unforgettable experiences, met incredible people, and had a fan base that was always our extra man on the field.’ Nothing will ever leave my mind!’