Manchester City striker Erling Haaland has said that forward Riyad Mahrez helped convince him to join the club when they met in Greece in 2021.
The Norwegian striker joined City from Borussia Dortmund for an initial fee of £51 million last summer. He has been prolific for his new club, scoring an incredible 27 goals and providing three assists in 24 games across competitions.
Haaland recently revealed that Mahrez spoke about Manchester City's atmosphere when they met at Mykonos in the summer of 2021. He claimed that was an important factor in his decision to move to the Etihad.
Speaking to CityTV, the striker said:
“We didn't speak a lot, but you said that I should come to City, and it was a good atmosphere. And this, for me, is really important in the team is the atmosphere that you enjoy every day. You just said a little bit, and for me, that was enough.”
Mahrez also shared his thoughts on the same, saying:
“I don't think I need to convince (new signings) because everyone wants to play for a club like City. Like you said before about the atmosphere, the club, the team, the dressing room. We've got a top team, top lads, and that's the most important thing.”
Haaland is already just two goals behind last season's Premier League Golden Boot winners Mohamed Salah and Son Heung-Min. They scored 23 goals last season, while the Norway international has scored 21 goals in just 17 league games.
Rio Ferdinand criticises Manchester City's use of Erling Haaland in Manchester Derby
Manchester City lost 2-1 against rivals Manchester United at Old Trafford in the Premier League on Saturday (January 14). City's goal came via Jack Grealish, but they failed to bring Haaland into the game as much as they would've liked.
Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand said that while the Norwegian made multiple runs, other Manchester City players failed to spot him. On his Vibe with Five podcast, Ferdinand said:
"A lot of people are asking if (Erling) Haaland has made them worse, you can't score that many goals in the team, and the team become worse. I looked at City at the weekend and watched them, they're not actually playing to suit him in recent weeks."
"The amount of runs he made ,and me and Joleon (Lescott) looked at each other and went, 'he's in, he was in'. They don't play the ball forward no way near enough. If they played a few of the passes forward, he's actually getting in on goal and facing up with De Gea, but they didn't see it."
The former Molde striker hasn't scored in his last three appearances for Manchester City across competitions. He will look to snap that streak when City host Tottenham Hotspur on Thursday (January 19).