Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola has asked his club to make a definitive effort to sign Borussia Dortmund centre-forward Erling Haaland according to a report in Diario AS.
But Haaland has instructed his agent, Mino Raiola, to reach an agreement as soon as possible with Real Madrid. Barcelona have also been credited with a serious interest in the Norwegian.
But Madrid don’t have the financial strength to enter a bidding war with a club as oil-rich as City, and won’t be able to sign Haaland unless they free up more of their wage bill.
Gareth Bale, Marcelo and Isco are all expected to become free agents in the summer, and their departures will free up enough financial space to sign Kylian Mbappe from Paris Saint-Germain. But that won’t be enough for Haaland.
The strength of Guardiola’s interest is also a problem for Madrid. The Catalan has lost Sergio Aguero and Ferran Torres in a matter of months, with Gabriel Jesus the only pure nine at the club.
But Madrid hope that Haaland’s desire to play at the Santiago Bernabeu will outweigh the financials of the deal. One thing beyond doubt is that we’re in for an interesting summer.