Italian journalist’s message to Hauge: Zlatan must like you

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Jens Petter Hauge (21) scored against Celtic – and gets praise in the Italian press. But he has no chance in Milan if Zlatan Ibrahimovic (39) does not like him, claims Serie A expert.

Filippo Conticello is a journalist in the famous sports newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport. His job is Serie A and international football. And he believes Jens Petter Hauge’s path to success depends on his relationship with Ibrahimovic. The super Swede is the team’s godfather. He has much more power than you realize, especially against young players, according to Conticello.

– Hauge gets a lot of nice words in the Italian media after the goal against Celtic, and coach Stefano Pioli likes him. But it’s even more important that “Ibra” likes you. If he does, you’re okay. But if “Ibra” does not like you, then it is not so easy for a newcomer in Milan, says Filippo Conticello.

He thinks Hauge’s “Scandinavian link” to Ibrahimovic is in favor of the former Bodø / Glimt player. On Thursday, the bodø boy came in from the bench for Milan in Glasgow and definitely decided the Europa League match with scoring (3-1) in overtime against Celtic.

– Hauge’s situation is exciting. But so far he is not a first choice for Pioli, says Conticello.

He emphasizes that Milan today, compared to the heyday of the 90s – where they were the world’s best club team with Marco van Basten, Ruud Gullit, Franco Baresi and Paolo Maldini as the big stars – is a completely different era.

It is mostly Juventus that has been about in Italy in recent times. Naples, Inter and Rome have excelled. But now Milan have taken control. At least they lead Serie A (meets Roma on Monday) with a full pot after four series rounds.

Steinar Nilsen played in Milan in 1997 and 1998. He did as Hauge – got the chance as an undescribed magazine from Norway – and scored an adventurous free kick goal from 25 meters against Inter. In the same match, he was injured after a collision with Ronaldo. That was the start of the downturn for the Tromsø weather.

– There is nothing as good as getting a score when you are fresh in the team. The fact that Hauge has distinguished himself with scoring increases his value in terms of team selection going forward. He is guaranteed attention, and it is guaranteed that he will be invested in, says Steinar Nilsen.

He adds that nothing is more important than players who can decide football matches. Then you hang high in courses with supporters, coaches and the press in Italy. When asked by VG to Nilsen about what he would have done, if he was Jens Petter Hauge today, the answer comes quickly.

– There is only one thing to do; stay injury free and exercise a lot. In Italy, it is important that you are in shape, and that you are constantly looking for where you can develop as a player. Hauge must be ruthless in this regard. If he manages to get into the mindset of Italian football, and learns the language as well, I think it looks extremely promising for him, says Steinar Nilsen.

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