Signs are rife of another golden era coming to Norwegian football. The presence of talents like Erling Haaland, Sander Berge and Kristoffer Ajer are all indicating something special emerging from the Scandinavian country. Jens Petter Hauge is the recent name joining this illustrious list of super talents in Norway.
According to numerous reports, Hauge is close to completing a move to Italian giants AC Milan. Hauge’s impressive performance for Bodø/Glimt in their Europa League qualifier against Milan has seen the winger emerging as a transfer target for the Rossoneri.
Jens Petter Hauge: The Long-Term Answer for AC Milan’s Left-Wing
Jens Petter Hauge is a native of Bodø, Norway. The winger was born in 1999 and joined the FK Bodø/Glimt youth academy at the age of 13. He made his debut in 2016 at the age of 16 and went on to make 20 appearances for Bodø/Glimt his debut season.
Bodø/Glimt’s 2017 season saw Hauge get his first major breakthrough. The winger played a prominent role for the club, scoring twice and making 13 assists as they secured promotion back to the top-flight. A loan move to Aalesunds in 2018 followed before Hauge established himself as a regular in Bodø’s first-team. This season, the winger has been one of the key members of the team’s impressive title challenge.
Hauge’s rise has been very impressive. Many of his improvements came about following his trip to U21 European Championships alongside a highly-talented Norway side that had the likes of Erling Haaland and Peter Ostigard.
Despite being one of the best young wingers in the country, Hauge is yet to make his senior international debut. The winger has been a regular in Norway’s youth teams and last played in the U21 side.
Jens Petter Hauge is a right-footed left-winger who usually operates as an inside forward. Under Kjetil Knutsen, the 20-year old has flourished for Bodø/Glimt while playing in the 4-3-3 formation. Though he plays as a left-winger predominantly, Hauge is also capable of playing in any position across the attacking front.
The 20-year old is extremely good in small spaces and possesses great dribbling skills. Hauge is also quick and has good close control, which makes him a nightmare to defend for the opposition.
The last two seasons have seen Hauge rapidly improve, from being a squad player to a starter. The 2019 Eliteserian saw the winger score seven goals and provide two assists. Taking into account that these figures came after coming off the bench in 21 of the 29 matches makes it an impressive tally. He ended the season with an average of 0.75 goals/assists per 90.
This season has seen Hauge’s output improve rapidly following his promotion to the starting line-up. The 20-year-old has scored 14 goals and provided 12 assists in 19 matches. In fact, Hauge ranks second in both the top scorers and top assists providers list. That is not all – the winger has also recorded 50 shots (fifth) and 26 on shots on target (fourth). He has also drawn 36 fouls in the league (seventh), proving himself to be a very menacing player in the attacking front.
Despite all these positives, the lack of crosses has been an area of concern for the youngster. Hauge has made just 28 crosses in the last two seasons, but that is more down to the playing style of Bodø/Glimt. Another weakness that is apparent in his game has been the lack of awareness and decision making. Hauge, at times, has been seen taking shots while near the goal instead of going for the easier options. This may be due to his young age but, then again, it is one area that needs improvements.
How Will Jens Peter Hauge Fit in at AC Milan?
Squad depth has been a major issue for the Rossoneri in their team rebuilding process. The Italian giants have slowly improved their starting line-up, but the lack of squad depth, in what could be a COVID-hit season, proved to be a stumbling block.
At the moment, Hauge is likely to improve Milan’s squad depth and take a place on the bench. The presence of Ante Rebic and Brahim Diaz pushes him down the pecking order, but he could play a play as an attacking threat from the bench, similar to his 2019 season at Bodø/Glimt.
Hauge would be a perfect replacement for Brahim Diaz if AC Milan decide against signing the Spaniard permanently at the end of the season.