The father of Jens Petter Hauge has offered some interesting background on how his son’s summer move to AC Milan came about.
We were the first to reveal that Milan have been serious in their pursuit of the winger since the 3-2 win over Bodo/Glimt at San Siro in the Europa League, a game in which he scored and notched an assist, and the operation moved quickly.
We were also the first to grab an interview with Hauge’s father Jan Ingvald about his son’s big move, which you can read here.
Now, MilanNews have done their own interview with the father of the Norway international, with the questions and his responses translated below.
How long have you known about Milan’s interest in Jens-Petter? Is it recent or has it been there for some time?
“Jens Petter has worked a lot with his agent Atta Aneke. It was very nice when I was informed about Milan’s interest this summer,” he said.
“Nobody knows exactly when the club’s interest was born but we certainly felt that the Rossoneri had been following Jens and his situation for some time. It was incredible that a fantastic club like Milan had considered his name but at the same time it was too early to celebrate. The situation was too uncertain.”
What was his reaction to Milan’s interest? And yours?
“There have been so many clubs linked with Jens in the last year. Because of this, therefore, we had learned to live with rumours and speculation. Our family always met with Aneke who was knowledgeable about our requests and what we needed. Jens was 100% focused on his work at Bodo and was unaffected by the interest of other clubs.
“Jens is not a boy of many words, however I noticed that Milan’s interest had tempted him. The night before he left for Milan to negotiate, I asked him if it was difficult to choose between the various clubs involved. He replied without hesitation: ‘Dad, I chose Milan’. So I immediately felt a sort of internal peace because I felt he was ready for the next step in his career.”
Can you confirm that Jens and Maldini spoke to each other after the end of the match between Milan and Bodo?
“What happens in Milan stays in Milan (laughs). No, I can neither confirm nor deny about contacts between Maldini and Jens.”
What other clubs, besides Milan, were on the trail of Jens?
“I’ve heard so many names but I can’t tell you exactly which clubs made a bid for Jens. I know there was a lot of interest from some English and European clubs and many of them have been mentioned in the media. I think the experience in the Europa League against Milan helped Jens in choosing to play with the Rossoneri.”
Jens Petter surprised many Rossoneri fans at San Siro, but as you know Norwegian football is different from Italian football. Do you think Jens Petter is ready for Serie A?
“The San Siro match was one of Jens’ best games in his career and this gave him great confidence in his means. I think Jens has the qualities for the Serie A level even if it’s a new level for him, a new club and a new culture.
“I have great confidence that he can develop his talent in a young and talented environment. I also believe he has certain qualities that can flourish alongside such talented companions and that can help him build his confidence. It will be exciting to follow him and the team. It’s like he told me on the phone: ‘This is where the work begins’.”
What were the reactions in Norway about his transfer to Milan?
“The fact that a great club like AC Milan has taken on a Norwegian player is a big event for football in Norway. His move was one of the most expensive in Norway and the most expensive in the history of Bodo/Glimt.
“There have been many messages of congratulations and compliments, so it was a transfer that created great excitement and increased interest in Italian football from the media.”
Jens has Ibrahimovic as his team-mate. What did he tell you about the Swedish champion in his early days at Milanello?
“I know that Jens is a huge fan of Zlatan. It is one of his idols. He is a fantastic player and expresses confidence on the pitch. I haven’t talked about Zlatan with Jens yet but I will definitely do it next time.
“In conclusion, I want to thank the Rossoneri fans for the great support for Jens Petter. I’m sure he will grow up with you at San Siro. I hope to come and see one of his matches soon.”