Everyone was expecting to see the three Højlund brothers together at Old Trafford. But things didn’t go as we expected them to. First were the unlikely heroes of Manchester, Harry Maguire and Andre Onana. United’s Rasmus, the only brother to feature as a starter, delivered a decent performance before being substituted off in the 86th minute.
Things didn’t end there for the Højlund brothers though, as in the 91st minute, the coach subbed on Oscar Højlund so that he could get some elite European air. Elder brother Rasmus was smiling after seeing his brother get subbed on. Although the third brother wasn’t a feature on the pitch, the other two shared the pitch among the Europe’s elite.
In the post-match interview, Rasmus crashed little brother Oscar’s interview. The United striker first hits the mic of the interviewer from behind and comes walking to his brother. The interviewer asks Rasmus a question.
Can you put into words what it means to stand with your brother?
The Danish striker gives a quick reply,
It’s incredible. It’s a great feeling that I’ve been on the same pitch as my brother. Now playing not only in like a normal stadium in Denmark, it’s maybe one of the most special stadiums in the world. So, it’s an incredible feeling.
The Life of Højlund brothers
Rasmus, Oscar and Emil are the three sons of former Danish footballer Anders Højlund. The family always enjoyed football and to date is still very much passionate about the sport. Rasmus is the elder one and the other two are twins. They have a 2 year difference in age with Rasmus.
All three of them started their youth careers with the local side Horsholm-Usserod Idraetsklub [HUI], which is a feeder club to FC Copenhagen. The three share a healthy sibling rivalry, which always resulted in competitive football games in their basement.
Their basement has a 10 by 6 metres indoor pitch. They built it after the boys’ indoor playing habits had become too expensive for the family. The brothers would train together with their dad often at the HUI ground. It was a time well-spent honing their skills under their father.
Later when they joined the youth side of Copenhagen, the trio dashed through the ranks at the club. Their development came to a halt when they moved up to the first team. With fewer minutes at the club, elder brother Rasmus decided to move to Austrian side Sturm Garz.
With a string of excellent performances, Serie A club Atalanta took notice where he spent the last season. The Danish striker was stuck with the same problems at Atalanta, fewer game time. Patience led a big reward, as the injury of Zapata meant that the starting spot was his. The elder brother put up convincing performances, especially once when he scored goals in four consecutive games.
Rasmus made his big move to EPL side Manchester United on a £64 million deal with £8 million performance based add-ons. He’s scored 3 goals in 10 appearances for United so far. The story remains different for the young twin brother.
They are still teenagers, so the young age means they are still developing with the youth teams. Oscar and Emile often feature on the Copenhagen bench but are mostly on the starting XI for the club’s youth side.
The brothers would have played together at Copenhagen if Rasmus hadn’t made the move. Still, the family doesn’t seem to have any regrets.
We all have dreams. We have had many at home around our dining table, this has been one of several. But there will be no disappointment if tonight is not the night.
The most important thing is that they do something that they think is fun and pursue their dreams. Until it is not attainable or fun anymore, we do not have a plan B. Our philosophy is to work hard for your dream and maybe it will work out.
Their father told to The Athletic when asked about the trio’s chances of sharing the pitch at Old Trafford.