In a recent exclusive conversation with The Official Man City Podcast, star striker Erling Haaland named Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi in his dream five-a-side team.
The Norwegian superstar drafted a team consisting of some of the greatest footballing legends in history. The only catch was that he could not include any Manchester City players in his lineup, past or present.
Revealing the five players he chose, Haaland said:
“I think I need to take a couple of Brazilians then. I would like to see Ronaldinho, [Lionel] Messi, Cristiano [Ronaldo, [Paolo] Maldini to be back there, then I need a ‘keeper, no? I would take [Iker] Casillas,”
Although he picked Real Madrid and Spain legend Iker Casillas in goal, he indicated his appreciation for current Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson. He singled out the Brazilian’s shot power and accurate passing as his defining traits.
“I would love Ederson because Ederson in these five-a-side games, if he is able to shoot, he would score 15 goals!” Haaland elaborated.
Italian defender Paolo Maldini and Brazilian forward Ronaldinho are also considered some of the best players to ever grace the game in their respective positions.
With Casillas guarding the goal and Maldini manning the defense, coupled with Ronaldinho’s skills, Messi’s incredible link-up, and Ronaldo’s finishing, Haaland built a perfectly balanced five-a-side lineup.
While both Messi and Ronaldo are nearing the twilight of their careers, Haaland’s career has only just begun. At just 23, he has already lifted the treble with Manchester City and has established himself as one of the best strikers in world football.
If Haaland maintains his incredible goalscoring exploits and lifts more titles, he might even make his way into future star footballers’ five-a-side lineups.
Erling Haaland reveals that Novak Djokovic is his idol outside of football
In the same interview, Erling Haaland also revealed that Serbian tennis superstar Novak Djokovic is his idol outside of football.
The current World No. 1, Djokovic has won the most Grand Slam titles (24) in the Open Era. Many fans consider him to be one of the greatest players to ever pick up a tennis racket, and the Norwegian certainly seems to be one of them.
Haaland praised Djokovic’s authentic personality and dedication, something that he felt that he could personally relate to.
“I like Djokovic. I think he’s good, he’s being himself and what he has achieved is amazing, coming from nowhere and from his country. I take Djokovic,” he stated.
Haaland recently made his comeback from a two-month injury layoff against Brentford. He will be looking to take inspiration from Djokovic as he guns for another season of success with Manchester City.