Born: 03.03.1969 in Kyrksæterøra
Position: Central Defender
A quick and classy defender, Erik Hoftun was somewhat of a late starter in top-flight football, and is one of the few Norwegian internationals in recent years that has never played a single youth or U21 international. Kyrksæterøra-born Hoftun began his career at his local side KIL/Hemne in the third division, before being snapped up by Molde ahead of the 1992 season. The pacy defender quickly adjusted to playing at a higher level, and soon made his name as one of Molde's key players. Hoftun was ever-present in his two seasons at Molde, but when the club was relegated in 1993, the other clubs were lining up for his signature, and he ultimately joined Molde's arch-rivals Rosenborg.
Hoftun settled quickly at Rosenborg, but despite his impressive performances for the Trondheim club, he was overlooked by the national team. After several outstanding seasons for Rosenborg, both domestically and in the Champions League, Hoftun finally got the chance to play for his country in 1997, when he was included in the squad of mainly home-based players for a four-nation tournament in Australia. He made his debut against the Australians, but remained fourth-choice behind Ronny Johnsen, Henning Berg and Dan Eggen in the games that mattered.
In 1998, after another impressive season in the Champions League, Hoftun was wanted by Serie A side Napoli. However, Hoftun was happy to remain in Trondheim, and turned down the move. Later that year, he was a member of Norway's World Cup squad in France, but spent the entire tournament on the bench. After the World Cup, Hoftun finally got an extended run in the national team (in part because of Ronny Johnsen's injury problems), and was virtually ever-present as Norway qualified for Euro 2000.
Throughout his career, Hoftun has stayed remarkably healthy. During his 16-year career in the top flight, he was hardly ever injured. However, in 2000, just weeks ahead of the European Championship, he did pick up an injury, forcing him to miss the tournament.
After Euro 2000, despite keeping up his impressive form for Rosenborg, Hoftun again found himself on the bench in the national team, now that Berg and Johnsen had returned to full fitness. And with Claus Lundekvam also staking his claim for a spot in the lineup, Hoftun found himself relegated to fourth-choice centre-back in 2002. Finally, he got tired of sitting on the bench, and announced his international retirement in the summer of 2002, having played 30 times for Norway.
At club level, Hoftun was the lynchpin of Rosenborg's defence for more than a decade, picking up 11 league championships and three cup titles during his spell at Lerkendal. Midway through the 2005 season, Hoftun left Rosenborg and joined Bodø/Glimt in a joint playing and administrative role. After two and a half seasons in Bodø, Hoftun retired from the game at the end of the 2007 season. In December 2007, he returned to Rosenborg, where he now works as director of football.
National Team Appearances
|6||06.09.1998||Oslo||Latvia||1-3||European Champ. Qual.|
|7||10.10.1998||Ljubljana||Slovenia||2-1||European Champ. Qual.|
|8||14.10.1998||Oslo||Albania||2-2||European Champ. Qual.|
|12||28.04.1999||Tbilisi||Georgia||4-1||European Champ. Qual.|
|14||30.05.1999||Oslo||Georgia||1-0||European Champ. Qual.|
|15||05.06.1999||Tirana||Albania||2-1||European Champ. Qual.|
|17||04.09.1999||Oslo||Greece||1-0||European Champ. Qual.|
|18||08.09.1999||Oslo||Slovenia||4-0||European Champ. Qual.|
|19||09.10.1999||Riga||Latvia||2-1||European Champ. Qual.|
|24||02.09.2000||Oslo||Armenia||0-0||World Cup Qualifier|
|26||02.06.2001||Kiev||Ukraine||0-0||World Cup Qualifier|
|27||06.06.2001||Oslo||Belarus||1-1||World Cup Qualifier|
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