Erling Haaland: All you need to know about Norwegian star
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Erling Haaland’s future has been a hot topic of discussion in recent days after Mino Raiola’s admission that they are looking at potential destinations for his next move. And the Italian agent’s meeting with Barcelona president Joan Laporta will only add more fuel to the fire regarding speculation about his future.
The Norwegian has been in sensational form since joining Borussia Dortmund for £17million from Red Bull Salzburg in January 2020.
Haaland has averaged better than a goal a game at Signal Iduna Park, scoring 71 goals in 70 appearances, including 17 in just 13 games this season.
But there is a general feeling he is outgrowing the Schwarzgelben after Marco Rose’s side bowed out of the Champions League and finished second in the Bundesliga last season.
Raiola has made no secret of his attempts to find the right club for Haaland’s next move and included some of Europe’s elite — including Barcelona — when listing his potential future employers.
“Man City has won the championship five times in recent years, significantly more than United,” he said to Sport1.
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“We have been thinking for two years. We have clear ideas of where Haaland should go. We are not influenced by the market.
“We can influence [things] with a player like Haaland. It’s really a second game parallel to football… two days of matches and five of rumours.”
Chelsea had courted Haaland over the summer before it came clear the Bundesliga outfit were not keen on allowing the 21-year-old to leave for any price.
The Champions League winners went on to sign Romelu Lukaku from Inter Milan, leaving Haaland to assess his options for a move next summer.
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It has always looked likely that the striker would depart in 2022 due to a release clause that was written into his contract when he signed for the club.
The clause, which stands at £68m, becomes active from July 1, allowing Haaland to leave for a much lower price than the £160m fee quoted to Chelsea.
Haaland, son of former Manchester City footballer Alf-Inge Haaland, was born in Leeds and has been repeatedly linked with a move to the Premier League.
He appeared to be close to joining Manchester United at one stage before he chose Dortmund, with the Red Devils unwilling to cave to Raiola’s demands.
The super agent wanted to include a release clause in his Man United contract, essentially making the Red Devils a stepping stone in case one of Barcelona or Real Madrid came calling.
However, with Ralf Rangnick recently taking charge, it is understood the German interim coach would be keen in bringing Haaland to Old Trafford.
But with Raiola revealing there is a “big chance” his client could leave as soon as next summer, Barca’s covert meeting is likely to set off alarm bells for interested parties.
“He will take the next step. Bayern, Real, Barca, City — these are the big clubs he can go to,” he added.
“When? Maybe this summer, maybe next. But there is a big chance he‘ll leave this summer.”
Barca are very much in a season of transition after losing Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann, with new coach Xavi Hernandez replacing Ronald Koeman.
But despite their troubles on and off the pitch, a meeting took place this week between Raiola, Barca president Laporta and sporting director Mateu Alemany.
According to transfer expert Fabrizio Romano, the three men met at a hotel in Turin away from where Barcelona had been staying for the Golden Boy, with Pedri winning the award in 2021.
The meeting had been planned for some time, suggesting there could have been a number of items up for discussion.
Raiola also represents Manchester United playmaker Paul Pogba, who has been linked with a move to Camp Nou.
The Frenchman’s contract expires in June 2022 and there is no agreement between the two parties to his renew his deal.
And the 28-year-old may be tempted to take on a new challenge in Serie A after five years in England, should the Catalan giants show their interest.
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