Since debuting in the competition at the start of last season, the 20-year-old Norwegian has scored more goals than anybody. Twenty times he’s found the back of the net for Salzburg and Borussia Dortmund and no one, not Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, nor even the white-hot Robert Lewandowski has scored more in that time.
But that comparison isn’t fair… to Haaland. See, while all three of those goalscoring greats are in their 30s and have over 400 Champions League appearances between them, Haaland has 14.
So we’ve looked back at these three legendary goalscorers, as well as other greats from the modern era, and compared how they did over their first 14 Champions League appearances when compared to Erling Haaland.
After 14 Champions League appearances
Shots on target: 29
Haaland is a freak of nature. Not only has the Norwegian been relentlessly prolific (in the 14 games he’s played in so far, he’s scored in 12) but he’s also terrifyingly accurate. His 20 goals have come from just 45 shots, meaning his shot conversion is an otherworldly 44%! He’s unreal, but how does he stack up?
Shots on target: 17
Arguably the greatest player of all time, Messi spent his first few seasons as an injury prone mesmeric winger. As a result he wasn’t the goalscoring phenom he is now and by the time of his 14th appearance he had scored just four goals with an 11% shot conversion rate.
Shots on target: 13
Mr. Champions League has 134 goals in Europe’s top competition but he took his time to get going and, by the time of Ronaldo’s 14th appearance, he hadn’t scored at all. In fact, Ronaldo didn’t score until his 27th Champions League appearance, and although he pretty much hasn’t stopped since then, he’s a way off Haaland’s quick start.
2-0 Haaland. Continue reading