We need to talk about Erling.
Just when it looked like a way to contain Manchester City’s juggernaut had been found, Haaland produced a moment of utter brilliance to down his former club Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.
The 22-year-old Norwegian showed incredible acrobatics to fire in the decisive goal, which saw him raise his left leg approximately six feet in the air as he got on the end of Joao Cancelo’s delightful cross from the left.
The goal was a superhuman effort, talkSPORT’s Micky Gray suggested.
“That’s 26 in 21 for Erling Haaland in Champions League football, it’s just incredible,” Gray said on commentary.
“The next time this guy comes out on the football field he’s going to be wearing a cape! He’s that good.
“You don’t see him for 75 minutes… what a superstar they’ve got on their hands.”
Haaland now has 13 goals in just nine appearances for Man City and his deadly play inside the box reminds Jason Cundy of one of English football’s greatest poachers.
“He is becoming one of the most unbelievable strikers,” Cundy said on The Sports Bar.
“I’ve not seen him put his laces through a shot yet. He doesn’t need to because he just taps the ball. It’s a caressed karate kick… it’s an outrageous finish.
“He’s a six-yard box goalscorer. Gary Lineker was like that, this is ten times Gary Lineker, this is Gary Lineker on steroids!” Cundy added.
However, Haaland‘s exploits reminded Pep Guardiola of an even bigger icon of the game – Johan Cruyff.
The Dutch icon, Guardiola’s former manager, scored a stunning goal with the outside of his right heel for Barcelona against Atletico Madrid in the 1973/74 season.
“What a goal,” said the City boss of Haaland’s strike. “I remember a long time ago in Barcelona Johan Cruyff scored one quite similar against Atletico Madrid. It’s nice Erling emulated Johan Cruyff.
“Maybe the people who know me know the influence of Cruyff in my life as a person, mentor and manager. Years ago he scored in Camp Nou and scored a goal v Atleti. It was quite similar to Haaland and the moment he scored it I felt Cruyff.”
He added of his Norwegian superstar: “I remember a little bit my dear friend [Zlatan] Ibrahimovic, who has this ability to put their foot on the roof, and Erling is quite similar on that.
“I think it is his nature. He is elastic, he is flexible and has the ability to make the contact and put the ball in the net.”
Haaland’s Champions League record is astonishing.
He has 26 goals in just 21 European games and despite Dortmund keeping him quiet for long periods, they couldn’t stop that moment of magic.
His confidence was clear when he was asked about Dortmund’s ability to stop him for large periods.
His reply: “They didn’t stop me, I scored!”
What a superstar.