- After 20 UEFA club competition games, Erling Haaland has scored an astonishing 24 goals, and he has registered at least once against every single side he has met in the UEFA Champions League. As the 20-year-old prepares to face his father Alf-Inge Håland's old club, Manchester City, marvel at his stats so far.
- With 24 in 20 European games so far, Haaland is scoring at an unprecedented rate. At the same point in their careers, the other modern greats had nothing like his goalscoring potency; after 20 European matches, Kylian Mbappé had scored 12 goals, Lionel Messi eight, Robert Lewandowski six and Cristiano Ronaldo just one.
- Even the most celebrated marksmen of the earliest years of UEFA club competition could not match Haaland's totals. After 20 European games, Real Madrid greats Ferenc Puskás and Alfredo Di Stéfano had scored 19 and 21 goals respectively; AC Milan titan José Altafini hit 21 in his first 20 games, while 1970s German heroes Gerd Müller and Jupp Heynckes scored 15 and 18 respectively in the equivalent number of continental fixtures at the start of their careers.
- Haaland is already Norway's joint-third highest scoring player in UEFA club competition, trailing Harald Brattbakk (31 in 75 games) and John Carew (28 in 85), but level on 24 goals with Toré André Flo (who took 61 games to reach the same total). His one-time mentor at Molde, Ole Gunnar Solskjær, ended his career with 23 European goals.
Only one team has managed to stop Haaland from scoring in a European game so far, the striker failing to find the target on his continental debut as his Molde side lost 2-1 against Northern Ireland's Glenavon in a July 2018 UEFA Europa League qualifier. He scored his first European goal in his next appearance, a 3-0 success against Albanian side Laç.
Glenavon's Rhys Marshall remembered of Haaland's debut: "He barely got a kick, to be fair to our defenders. He was very young; there were something like 18 or 19 scouts there to watch him. We all knew about him before because there was so much talk about him. That was in the summer and I think the following January he joined Salzburg."
Surprisingly, Haaland's European goalscoring statistics have improved with each move up the international ladder; with Molde, he scored four goals in five European games, while he hit eight in his seven UEFA games for Salzburg, and has registered 12 times in eight Dortmund games.
Those raw figures – 24 in 20 matches – are the equivalent to 1.2 goals per game. Should he continue to score at the same rate, he will overtake Cristiano Ronaldo's record of 137 European goals some time during his 115th continental fixture. Had Ronaldo had scored at the same rate as Haaland throughout his 184 European games to date, he would have hit 220 goals by now.
Which clubs has Haaland scored against?
All of them bar Glenavon, ten clubs in all: Club Brugge, Genk, Hibernian, Laç, Lazio, Liverpool, Napoli, Paris, Sevilla and Zenit. Eight of his goals have come against Belgian opposition, at a rate of one every 33 minutes.
When Haaland has scored his UEFA Champions League goals
Haaland's goals have been spread evenly across both halves so far, but opposition managers might like to note that he is at his most fearsome when he gets the scent of half-time oranges; seven of his 24 goals have come in the final 15 minutes of the first half.
Photo credit: BVB Borussia Dortmund