Full Name: Henning Berg
Date of Birth: 1st September 1969, Eidsvoll
Internationals: 100 Caps for Norway, 9 goals
Signed: January 1993 (£400,000 from Lillestrom) & November 2000 (£1.75 million from Manchester United after loan)
Left: August 1997 (£5 million to Manchester United) & August 2003 (free transfer to Glasgow Rangers)
Clubs (Prior to Rovers): 1st spell – Valerenga, Lillestrom (both Norway), 2nd spell – Manchester United (After Rovers): 1st spell – Manchester United, 2nd spell – Glasgow Rangers
Henning Berg came to Blackburn Rovers in 1993 as a relative unknown but left as a Premiership Champions known everywhere, but where did it all begin and where is he now…
The cultured defender who played most of his football as a central defender but was equally at home as a full-back started his career in his native Norway with Valerenga in the late 1980’s, playing his first competitive match in 1988, going on to make his under-21 debut with Norway shortly after.
Four-years with Valerenga saw him play over 60 matches but as the club struggled one of Norway’s biggest club sides Lillestrom snapped him up in January 1992, the same year in which his full International career began. Berg wouldn’t stay with Lillestrom very long though, little over a year after signing for the club Kenny Dalglish noticed the Norwegian Internationals talent and picked him up for a bargain £400,000 in January 1993 as Rovers’ meteoric rise began in out first season in the Premiership.
Two-years after arriving at Ewood Park Berg was celebrating being a Premier League Champion, playing a pivotal role in the clubs 1994-1995 season Championship success.
Two-years after winning the Title as Rovers’ fortunes started taking a turn for the worse Berg followed in the footsteps of former defensive team mate David May when he left Ewood for Old Trafford, signing for Manchester United in August 1997 for £5 million.
Although his three-year spell with United saw first team football limited, mainly due to his unfortunate luck with injuries he still managed to win back to back Premiership Titles, the first during the memorable 1998-1999 treble winning season, making him the only person in Premiership history to win Titles with different clubs, the second the following season of 1999-2000. He also obviously picked up a 1999 FA Cup winners and 1999 Champions League winners medal to complete his, and United’s treble of that season (1998-1999).
Berg made the surprise switch back to Ewood in September 2000, signing an initial three-month loan deal which became permanent in November 2000 when he was re-signed by then manager Graeme Souness for £1.75 million with him helping us to promotion back the Premiership.
In a three-year second spell with the club Berg captained the side to the Worthington Cup in 2002, in our first season back in the top flight (2001-2002) before being given a free transfer to Glasgow Rangers in August 2003. In his one and only season with Rangers he helped them to a runners up position behind Celtic in 2003-2004 season playing a part of their Champions League campaign.
Berg won his 100th and final International cap with Norway in 2004 against Wales, and after playing for Norway in the 1994 and 1998 World Cup Finals as well as the European Championship Finals of 2000 he retired from the International game and professional football altogether.
After his retirement Berg briefly moved into the media world, working as a television commentator for Norwegian broadcasting.
2005 saw Berg fulfil his ambition of becoming a football manager when he was named head coach of Norwegian side FC Lyn Oslo.
Chances are we are likely to hear much more of the Rovers legend in the future (look out for more on vital Blackburn alone with his induction into the Rovers Legends Hall of Fame once James has some free time to write his article.) What price a third stint with Rovers as a future manager? Stranger things have happened?
The above information is as accurate to my knowledge as possible, up to and including 28th November 2006.
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Where Are They Now…Henning Berg
Full Name: Henning Berg