After six months of intense scouting, Viking has finally found the man it hopes to replace Former top scorer Veton Berisha.
Australian Nicholas D’Agostino arrived in Stavanger at the weekend, and on Monday the striker completed a medical and signed a four-year contract with Viking. The 24-year-old was brought in from Australian club Melbourne Victory, where he scored 13 goals in 38 matches in two seasons.
“It’s a club with a great history, and that was one of the reasons I came here,” says TV2’s Nicholas D’Agostino after appearing in his first rainy-weather Vikings training session in Stavanger on Tuesday morning.
– In addition, it helps that they have another player from Australia here, Gianni Stenses. It made me feel comfortable and helped me with my first start here, says Berisha’s replacement.
The striker’s ambitions in Norwegian football are great. The goal is to use the Vikings as a springboard for a larger club. The dream is to try one day in the Premier League.
– Yes, as a footballer you always want to play at the highest level. It’s a big step to play in Europe. But now I want to come here mainly to play well and contribute to winning Vikings games,” he points out.
A striking resemblance to Carroll
After his arrival at Viking, many noted the similarities between D’Agostino and former Premier League profile Andy Carroll, who previously featured goals for clubs such as Newcastle, Liverpool and West Ham.
D’Agostino admits he’s often reminded of his similarities to Carroll – both in terms of looks and skills on the court.
– Yes, I’ve heard it many times. Perhaps mostly due to the poetry, D’Agostino laughs about the similarities to Carroll, before continuing:
– Carroll is a player who made a great career in the English Premier League. Being compared to him is fine for me. I’m not as tall as him, but he loves winning duels in the penalty area and so am I. We also have a lot of the same endings. It’s courtesy to be compared to him, says the new Viking forward, before saying:
He played in the Premier League for many years and had a great career. I hope to do the same one day.
Fine Studies Braut Haaland
However, Andy Carroll isn’t the only forward the Vikings’ new signing has followed closely. The forward, who is an Australian national team player, describes himself as a true “football fanatic”.
Because after training and matches, he watches almost all sports on TV and all matches from the English Premier League.
In the Premier League, one Norwegian player in particular is being studied more carefully than the others: Manchester City’s top scorer Erling Braut Haaland.
– Erling Braut Haaland “eccentric”. He has scored 25 goals in 19 Premier League matches so far. It’s completely crazy. I love watching him play. I’m doing research and seeing how Braut Haaland’s moves and objects there can help my game, D’Agostino points out.
– I can learn a lot from Braut Haaland. It’s big and strong. I’m not big, but I’m fast, strong, and some aspects of my game are like him. It’s obviously not a fair comparison, but I try to pick out little things from Braut Haaland that can help me improve my game, he points out.
Don’t feel pressured
On Tuesday, former Viking top scorer Veyton Berisha was ready for his birth, after playing just six months at Sweden’s Hammarby. D’Agostino knows fans expect him to replace Berisha, but he maintains that it’s not something he spends a lot of time thinking about.
No, that’s not something I’m thinking about. Fitton has done a lot of good for the club, but obviously I have my own style and I came here to do my job. I think first of all about coming here and showing my abilities to the fans on the field, says the forward.
– So you don’t feel pressured?
– No, I put pressure on myself every day, and I don’t feel any pressure considering who played here before me. I came here to play well and help my team. There are many ways to help my team, either by scoring goals, contributing the right passes at the right time, replies the new Viking striker.
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