After FC Barcelona and Real Madrid on Thursday, it is the turn of the English clubs, Manchester City and Liverpool in the lead, to try to recruit the Norwegian Erling Haaland by presenting his father Alf-Inge and his agent Mino Raiola their financial and sporting arguments .
The 20-year-old nugget is still under contract with Borussia Dortmund until 2024, but his sense of goal and his statistics (20 goals in 14 matches in C1 since his debut in September 2019, a record) already panic the biggest clubs from Europe.
The Haaland clan began their seduction tour Thursday in Spain, between Barcelona and Madrid, before flying to England on Friday.
According to the Spanish press, Alf-Inge Haaland and Mino Raiola joined Barcelona on Thursday from Nice. After meeting Barca’s new president, Joan Laporta, the two representatives of the young player joined Madrid in the early afternoon, where they visited the Valdebebas training center and had an exchange with the sporting leaders of the « White House », but not President Florentino Perez, absent.
Two meetings that lasted between three and four hours each.
At Barça, an economic brake?
Barca have shown a keen interest in the striker, but the club’s economic situation is very delicate: the Blaugrana club must pay off a debt that exceeds one billion euros in the long term.
The ideal scenario for the Catalan club would be for Haaland to stay yet another year at Dortmund. Thus, its price would drop from 150 million to 75 million euros according to the Catalan press.
To this, it will be necessary to add about 40 million euros in commissions that will be divided between the father and the player’s agent according to Catalan television TV3, as was the case during his transfer from Salzburg to Dortmund, in January 2020, for around 20 million euros.
But will Haaland have the patience to wait when the biggest Spanish and English clubs are at his feet? Economically, FC Barcelona cannot fight with the financial arguments of Real Madrid, but the “merengue” club already have Kylian Mbappé and David Alaba in their sights this summer, so Barcelona hope that these two potential recruits will complicate the arrival of the Norwegian prodigy. .
Beyond the financial aspect, the two Spanish clubs have prestigious sporting arguments: Barça has – still until June 30 for the moment – Lionel Messi, one of the best players in history, at the head of a squad of stars, just like Real Madrid, which has for its part the other Norwegian nugget Martin Odegaard, currently on loan at Arsenal, who is a great friend of Haaland.
Bayern not interested
The English clubs on Friday tried to minimize their inclinations around the Norwegian.
Chelsea coach Thomas Tuchel declined to mention Friday the London club’s potential interest in the 1.94m striker, but assured Mino Raiola was trying to raise the stakes.
« He’s a Borussia Dortmund player, and of course there are a lot of rumors around him and his agent (…) And it looks like they’re creating a race to (recruit) the player, ”noted the German technician.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, his Norwegian counterpart from Manchester United, who had Haaland under his command at Molde, also chose to calm speculation about the possible charm offensive led by the Mancunian club, who were close to signing Haaland instead. of Red Bull Salzburg in August 2018.
And the Manchester City coach, Pep Guardiola, meanwhile raised the idea of not recruiting a new striker to replace Agüero, citing on the one hand the financial losses linked to the Covid and on the other hand the already sufficient resources in the within its workforce to come and supplant the Argentinian.
Ahead of the start of this European tour, one of the continent’s big names, Bayern Munich, reportedly abandoned the race on Wednesday.
Asked by the daily Sport Bild about rumors of Haaland transfers, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge was surprised: “Where do these rumors come from? I do not know. I can only say one thing: we have the best footballer in the world in this position (center-forward). Robert Lewandowski has a contract until 2023 “, decided the boss of Bayern.
Where will Erling Haaland play next season? The question remains unresolved, but the first elements of an answer begin to fall.