Klaas-Jan Huntelaar joined Schalke from Italian giants AC Milan in 2010 - © © imago
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar joined Schalke from Italian giants AC Milan in 2010 - © © imago
Bundesliga

Ten things about Klaas-Jan Huntelaar

A veritable goal machine since signing for FC Schalke 04 in 2010, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar has been one of the deadliest strikers in world football for over a decade.

bundesliga.com presents ten things you may not have know about the Dutchman with a special eye for goal...

- © imago

Early steps

Born in 1983, Huntelaar's took his first footballing steps with his local village side in Hummelo, central eastern Netherlands, before being scouted and signed by local powerhouse De Graaafschap in 1994. He has two siblings - Niek and Jelle - but it was Klaas that displayed an early gift for the beautiful game. "He went to the local club at the age of five, and you could immediately see how talented he was," recalled his father Dirk in 2012.

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From Amsterdam, to Madrid, to Milan, to Gelsenkirchen

By early 2009, Huntelaar had become one of the most sought-after players in Europe. He left the Netherlands and signed for Real Madrid CF, but facing stiff competition from the likes of compatriot Ruud van Nistelrooy and Raul, he moved to AC Milan. He also struggled to settle in Italy, where he was often deployed out wide, and in the summer of 2010, he arrived in Gelsenkirchen and Bundesliga with Schalke, just a short drive from his home town of Hummelo.

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Taxi!

With Gelsenkirchen so close to his hometown, Huntelaar has lived in the Netherlands since moving to Schalke, and is still on occasion driven to training by his father, just as he was when he was a boy. "Why doesn't he drive himself?" his father was asked in an interview in 2012. "Because I'm the better driver!"

- © gettyimages
- © gettyimages
- © imago