Erling Haaland: Can the Leeds-born Manchester City striker play for England?


After Sunday’s hat-trick against Manchester United, Haaland scored City’s first two of the night before an own goal from David Khocholava and second-half strikes from Riyad Mahrez and Julian Alvarez.

City’s dominance was such that Guardiola could pull Haaland off at half-time after seeing him score his 18th and 19th goals of the season for City.

The day had started with reports in Spain that a clause in the 22-year-old’s contract would give Real Madrid a chance to sign him as early as 2024, but Guardiola said there was no truth to the report.

“That’s not true,” said the City boss. “He has no release clause for Real Madrid or any other team.

“The rumors and the people talking, we can’t control them. I always worry about what we can control.

“What is important is that he has adapted very well, we feel that he is happy here. We will try with him and all those who want to stay to make them happy.

“In the future, no one knows, but he’s happy, he’s settled in perfectly, he’s incredibly loved and that’s the most important thing.”

Manchester City and Manchester United at Etihad Stadium on October 02, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)” height=”1333″ width=”2000″ srcset=”https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/webimg/b25lY21zOjg0YTVkNmViLTViYjAtNDFiYy1iZjU5LTEyNDdiZDc5MzAyYTpjNmI3OWJiNS1kMWIzLTQ5NTktYjg3ZS1jNDJiYWFhMGUxZGU=.jpg?quality=65&smart&width=320 320w, https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/webimg/b25lY21zOjg0YTVkNmViLTViYjAtNDFiYy1iZjU5LTEyNDdiZDc5MzAyYTpjNmI3OWJiNS1kMWIzLTQ5NTktYjg3ZS1jNDJiYWFhMGUxZGU=.jpg?quality=65&smart&width=640 640w” layout=”intrinsic” class=”i-amphtml-layout-intrinsic i-amphtml-layout-size-defined” i-amphtml-layout=”intrinsic”>Manchester City celebrates after the Premier League match between Manchester City and Manchester United at Etihad Stadium on October 02, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)” fallback=”” layout=”responsive” height=”1333″ width=”2000″ src=”https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/img/placeholder.png” class=”i-amphtml-layout-responsive i-amphtml-layout-size-defined” i-amphtml-layout=”responsive”>
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 02: Erling Haaland of Manchester City celebrates after the Premier League match between Manchester City and Manchester United at Etihad Stadium on October 02, 2022 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Haaland was born in Leeds when his father Alfie Haaland played for Leeds United in the Premier League. In 2004, at the age of three, he moved to Bryne, the birthplace of his Norwegian parents.

As the 22-year-old continues to score goals at a remarkable rate, more and more fans are discovering that the Man City star was born in England. Which led to the question – can he play for England?

Norway won’t be going to the World Cup, but despite FIFA recently relaxing their country eligibility rules, Haaland is unable to switch allegiance to the country of his birth.

Can players change nationality?

Ahead of Euro 2020 last summer, Man City defender Aymeric Laporte was named in Spain’s squad for the tournament.

He won 51 caps for France at youth level and was called up to the senior team twice but was not capped. In 2021, after receiving Spanish citizenship and FIFA approval to change national teams, Laporte became a Spain international.

At the end of 2020, FIFA updated its eligibility rules to reflect a more globalized society.

Footballers can switch national team allegiance once, but now this decision can also be overturned under specific circumstances.

What rules apply to the change of nationality?

Players can change international teams if they held the nationality of the country they wish to change to prior to their first appearance for their current country.

Players must have played no more than three competitive senior matches before the age of 21 and cannot have played in a major final with their first country.

At least three years must also have passed since the player’s last senior appearance for his previous national team.

The age limit of 21 does not apply to players who played their last game for their former national team before September 18, 2020, when the updated rules were introduced.

Unfortunately for English fans who are hoping for a switch of allegiance from Haaland, that wouldn’t be allowed under FIFA rules.

The Man City man has featured 23 times for Norway, scoring 21 goals. His last caps came last month when he appeared in the Nations League.

Before becoming one of Norway’s star players, he could have played for England due to his birth in Leeds.

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