Norwegian football star Erling Braut Haaland was injured during his national team’s match against Armenia in Oslo Tuesday evening, but the Norwegians ended up winning their biggest victory in 30 years.
State broadcaster NRK reported that Armenia “desperately” tried to stop Haaland, resulting in what NRK called an “ugly” tackling that left him with a bloody ankle. He’d scored the first goal, setting off seven more by his teammates plus a goal embarrassingly kicked in by the opposing side.
It all ended with a 9-0 victory for Norway, after a match in which 80 percent of spectators polled by NRK claimed there was far too much unnecessarily brutal play, much of it aimed at Haaland. Armenia’s coach Joaquin Caparros was grilled as to what his plan had been. He replied by saying that his team had to cover and target “that player” (Haaland), arguing it was “the only way to make him weaker than he is.”
Norwegian player Joshua King, meanwhile, scored three times and planted a kiss on Haaland’s cheek. The training match at Ullevaal Stadium in Oslo wasn’t a qualifier but keeps the Norwegians on a roll after their 2-0 victory against Slovakia on Friday.