Born: 02.01.1972 in Haugesund
Egil Østenstad may have been outshined by the likes of Flo and Solskjær, but was nonetheless a productive striker for Norway in the second half of the 1990s. Østenstad was also a productive goalscorer at club level, and is Viking's all-time top scorer in Tippeligaen despite spending eight years of his career overseas.
Østenstad joined Viking from lower-division Torvastad in 1990, and although not yet a regular in the side, he played enough matches to get a championship medal when Viking won the league in 1991. His breakthrough season was 1993, when he was Viking's top scorer, and got his international debut in a friendly against the Faroe Islands. Despite scoring twice in less than 20 minutes against the Faroes, Østenstad had to wait two-and-a-half years for his second cap. At club level, Østenstad scored an incredible 23 goals in 24 matches for Viking in 1996, earning him a move to English Premiership side Southampton. He made an immediate impact at The Dell, scoring twice against Manchester United in only his third game for the Saints, and finished second to Matt Le Tissier in the club's goalscoring chart in 1996/97. He also got his first start for the national team that year, against Switzerland. In 1997, Østenstad scored the final goal in the 4-2 friendly win against Brazil, but he remained third-choice striker behind Flo and Solskjær.
In 1998, Østenstad was a member of Norway's World Cup squad. However, his contribution in the finals was restricted to 17 minutes as a substitute against Scotland, and when Nils Johan Semb took over as national coach at the end of the World Cup, Østenstad dropped down in the pecking order and hardly played for the national team again, despite finishing the 1998/99 season as Southampton's joint top scorer.
In August 1999, Østenstad was transferred to Blackburn. His first season at Ewood Park was reasonably productive, with eight goals. For the most part though, Østenstad failed to live up to expectations at Blackburn, and by the start of the 2000/01 season, he had lost his place in the side. A lacklustre loan spell at Manchester City, and a largely disappointing spell at Rangers in 2003/04 ended his career in British football, and he returned to Viking in the summer of 2004.
Back at Viking, Østenstad regained his scoring touch to the point that he was recalled to the national team in late 2005 (due to an injury crisis), despite the fact that he had already announced his upcoming retirement at the end of the season. Østenstad got his 18th and final cap in the World Cup qualifier against Scotland in 2005, more than six years after his previous appearance for Norway. Despite scoring 14 goals for Viking that year, Østenstad kept his word, and retired at the end of the 2005 season. Currently, he is still employed by Viking, working as the Stavanger team's director of football.
|4||09.10.1996||Oslo||Hungary||3-0||World Cup Qualifier|
|5||10.11.1996||Bern||Switzerland||1-0||World Cup Qualifier|
|6||29.03.1997||Sharjah||United Arab Emirates||4-1|
|8||08.06.1997||Budapest||Hungary||1-1||World Cup Qualifier|
|10||10.09.1997||Oslo||Switzerland||5-0||World Cup Qualifier|
|18||07.09.2005||Oslo||Scotland||1-2||World Cup Qualifier|
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