The Norwegian is eager to replicate the same hunger shown by the Portuguese legend as he continues to make a big impact at Dortmund
Borussia Dortmund sensation Erling Haaland has revealed that Juventus superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is an inspiration for him, while revealing little concern after Paris Saint-Germain seemed to mock his meditation celebration.
The 19-year-old striker scored 28 goals in all competitions for Salzburg this term before joining Dortmund in January, netting another 12 in just 11 appearances prior to the coronavirus pandemic.
And Haaland says that five-time Ballon d’Or winner Ronaldo has been an inspirational figure.
“You could just see it in Ronaldo’s face that ‘today I’m the man’ and ‘today, I will score goals’ and that’s what he did,” Haaland told ESPN, having watched the former Real Madrid and Manchester United star growing up.
“That’s what I like the best, how dedicated and hungry they are to succeed and to be the man in the moment.”
On his incredible start to life at Dortmund, Haaland added: “It’s been a very good start and from my debut I’ve been enjoying it a lot and smiling a lot and these kind of things and that’s what’s the most important about my life, to smile a lot and these kind of things. So, yeah, that’s what I try to do the most.
“I feel I’m improving every day and now that I play with even better team-mates than what I played with in Salzburg – all respect to Salzburg – but yeah, they can find me in even better situations, so it’s been good.”
A first-leg brace from Haaland gave Dortmund a 2-1 win over PSG before the French champions rallied to secure a 3-2 aggregate victory back in March.
Haaland celebrated his two goals in the opening leg by sitting cross-legged and pretending to meditate – a celebration Neymar mimicked at the Parc des Princes, with some of his PSG team-mates doing the same after the game.
The Norway international claims he wasn’t bothered, however, insisting that it helped show off the practice of meditation to the watching world.
He said: “I think they helped me a lot to get meditation out in the world and to show the whole world that meditation is an important thing so I’m thankful that they helped me with that.”