England's fist game after the World Cup is a friendly against Scandinavian side Norway. However, this current Norway side is quite different compared to year's past where there were several notable names especially for English football fans. In fact, it's quite rare to find Norwegians playing in the top flight of English football today, compared to the 1990s or early 2000s. With that in mind, let's take a trip down to memory lane as we profile several notable Norwegians in Premier League.
Ole Gunnar Solksjær (Manchester United, 1996-2007)
"The Baby-faced assassin" was part of the treble winning Manchester United side in 1999, in fact he also scored the last minute winner against Bayer Munich in the Champions league final, capping a magnificent comeback on magical night in May. That goal came after he came on as a substitute, which led to another nickname, "Super sub" as he was often sent on late in the game should The Red Devils needed late goals. He scored 126 times for the club and later had a coaching role with the reserves before embarking on a managerial career where he enjoyed success back home with Molde. He is currently managing Cardiff City in The Championship, unable to steer the club from relegation after he joined in January 2014.
Henning Berg (Blackburn Rovers, 1993-97, 2000-03 & Manchester United, 1997-2000)
Similar to Solksjær, Berg was also part of Manchester United's treble winning side in 1999. Prior to joining Manchester United in 1997, Berg spent four seasons with Blackburn Rovers where he helped the Lancashire side in winning the Premier League in 1995, playing as the first choice defender under then manager Kenny Dalglish. He later rejoined Blackburn Rovers, before finishing his career with Rangers in Scotland. After retiring, Berg stepped into the dugout to become a coach. After several seasons managing two clubs in Norway, he accepted an offer to manage Blackburn Rovers back in 2012. However, he only lasted 57 days at Ewood Park and is currently managing Legia Warsaw.
Tore André Flo (Chelsea, 1997-2000 & Sunderland, 2002-03)
The tall striker enjoyed two spells with Premier League clubs but with contrasting fortunes. Flo arrived at Chelsea in 1997 and helped the London side won the League Cup and The Cup Winners' Cup in his first season. His best season at Chelsea came in the 1999-00 season, as he scored 19 goals in all competition en route to winning the FA Cup. He then left for Rangers, and after three years in Scotland returned to English football with Sunderland. But he could not replicate his goalscoring form with Sunderland and left after a season. He then had two more disappointing spells with Leeds United and MK Dons in The Championship and League One.
John Arne Riise (Liverpool, 2001-08 & Fulham, 2011-14)
The marauding left back who is famous for his thunderbolt of a shot and red hair was a regular with Liverpool and after three seasons away from England (where he played for Roma in Italy) joined Fulham until he was released at the end of last season. With Liverpool, he made 348 appearances in all competition and had a knack for scoring goals with his dangerous left foot. He helped Liverpool winning the Champions League back in 2006, where they managed to overturn a 3-0 deficit at halftime to tie the game 3-3 against AC Milan before emerging victorious in penalty shootout. In 2011, he joined Fulham but his time in London ends with a relegation last season. He joined Cyprus' APOEL in the transfer deadline day, penning a two-year deal.
Alf-Inge Håland (Nottingham Forest, 1993-97, Leeds United, 1997-00, & Manchester City, 2000-03)
The Norwegian defender is probably more famous for his clash with former Manchester United captain, Roy Keane. In 1997, Keane injured his ACL while challenging Håland, which prompted the Norwegian to suggest that Keane was faking his injury to get the referee's sympathy. Three years past, and Keane had his revenge. Playing for United's neighbor, Manchester City, Keane committed a nasty challenge on Håland and was subsequently sent-off. He retired in 2003 due to his injury.