Erling Haaland is bulldozing his way to becoming a €100 million footballer.
Aged 20, he is one of the most talked about players on the planet. He has just won the prestigious Golden Boy award and has 17 goals from 13 Borussia Dortmund appearances this season, including four in last weekend's Bundesliga match against Hertha Berlin and another two in the Champions League in midweek. His huge frame, sensational sprinting power, instinctive finishing and all-range shooting ability make him a front-man that could truly fit into any team and any system in Europe.
So where does he land next?
Champions League
Next Haaland? He wants to be the next Robben! Meet Karim Adeyemi - Inside Europe
17/09/2021 AT 13:46
A release clause in his contract means Haaland becomes available for €75 million in the summer of 2022 - yet there are some clubs that will not want to wait that long. German insiders suggest that Dortmund are beginning to brace themselves for bids in the summer of 2021 and it is not unreasonable that they'll set their bar high. A €100 million price-tag would not be a surprise. It might even be higher.
The player himself is carefully plotting his journey to the very top. He aims to be recognised as the best player in the world and one day we may well speak about him in the same terms as Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi. But the management plan around Haaland suggests this is not going to be a straightforward deal for any of the European super clubs that like him.
Such is his clear thinking, sources also say it would not be a surprise for Haaland to stick with this young, energetic, ambitious Dortmund side until 2022. But we all know how football works. Money talks and if a big enough offer lands on the table, and the player has his head turned, any plan can change.
Here, with the help of sources across Europe, we break down the big clubs that have been tracking him and define their chances of signing one of the game's most exciting talents.

Manchester City

Pep Guardiola, manager of Manchester City is interviewed by City TV after signing a contract extension

Image credit: Getty Images

At a time when City are looking for a new focal point of their side, they are of course on the trail of Haaland. Pep Guardiola could mould him quickly into the perfect forward for his style of football and it is considered that he has a similar hunger for goals as current striker Sergio Aguero. There are very few players who are capable of taking over from the Argentine, who has become the club’s record goalscorer.
Of course, the fact his father also played for Man City is seen as a reason for this deal to progress but that’s not going to be the main pull here. Haaland would have the chance to be the star man in a side pursuing glory in the Premier League and Champions League.
City are expected to become the first club to approach Dortmund in the new year but they should prepare for some bad news, as sources close to the player are very unsure about this being his next stop. There is a feeling that if he moves in the next year, he would probably choose to test himself somewhere else before the Premier League. It is probably too soon to make this step.

Real Madrid

So, what about a move to the Spanish capital?
Madrid are on the lookout for a long-term Karim Benzema replacement so it is understandable they are beginning to look in this direction. Haaland is on the radar and in the build-up to 2021 this potential move will be spoken about endlessly. He has all the qualities of a Galactico and would fit the club's 10-year vision. However, it really might not suit his needs at the moment.
Unless Benzema leaves, Haaland will not be guaranteed games week-in, week-out. And sources say that is going to be one of his most important factors when it comes to picking a new club. Like City, Madrid might have to wait. And, anyway, Haaland will only become an option once the Spaniards have tried for Kylian Mbappe. The Frenchman remains their prime target.
It is also worth mentioning here that Barcelona have not been in the Haaland conversation so far but that could change. The presidential election in 2021 will bring changes, and only after that will we know the club's transfer vision.

Juventus

A switch to Serie A does not get spoken about as frequently as some of the other destinations listed, but Juve have to be taken seriously as a potential landing spot. They followed him closely when he played for Molde but did not follow-up on the interest when it came to decision time. Then, just before he went to Dortmund, they did sniff around again and considered more seriously the prospect of making an offer.
Sources in Italy now insist Juventus are continuing to follow him and that managing director Fabio Paratici is making sure he is kept in the loop on any potential changes to his transfer status. There is some concern about whether they would be able to afford him in the next summer window, but as Juve strive to become Europe’s biggest team both on and off the pitch, this is a move that should not be ruled out.

Manchester United

Erling Haaland of Borussia Dortmund and Marco Verratti of Paris Saint-Germain battle for the ball

Image credit: Getty Images

It was a big disappointment for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer that he was not able to talk Haaland into joining United instead of Dortmund. The club put faith in their legendary Norwegian to convince Haaland, who had played for his former club Molde, that a move to Old Trafford was too good to turn down.
Solskjaer turned it into a personal mission but ultimately could do little about the fact Haaland simply preferred the idea of joining Dortmund. He remains on United's wanted list, there's no doubt about that. But at a time when the club lack consistency and stability, it's going to be a tough sell. Throw in the fact that they have already got a rocky relationship with Dortmund over their pursuit of Jadon Sancho, and German insiders say this one seems pretty unlikely.

Liverpool

In some ways this transfer makes a lot of sense for Haaland. Liverpool have a great relationship with his former club, RB Salzburg, as well as his current club Borussia Dortmund. Of course, Dortmund is where Jurgen Klopp made his name - and he still has good connections there. Klopp is an admirer and there are figures within the club who believe Haaland could be their next major signing.
However, in order for Haaland to arrive it is thought one of their current big names would need to leave. Liverpool have been careful about their spending over the past two years and are expected to continue on that path over the next 12 months.
Of the big names it is felt Mohamed Salah would be most likely to leave Liverpool first, largely due to the combined factors of his ambition and growth in status. Both Barcelona and Real Madrid have been linked. Salah out, Haaland in does not seem likely right now, but it might be something to look out for further down the line.

PSG

Erling Haaland of Borussia Dortmund and Marco Verratti of Paris Saint-Germain battle for the ball

Image credit: Getty Images

Worth covering this one as the link is starting to surface following speculation that Haaland would replace Mbappe if he moves to Madrid.
There’s not much to it right now and if you cast your mind back to last season, the PSG squad were wound up by his apparent social media taunts about owning Paris. They mocked his goal celebration and it would be surprising to imagine him joining them.

Bayern Munich

It would be silly to not at least consider that the player might stay in Germany - and if he does there is only one club to join. So far there is no concrete interest from Bayern and the prospect of anything happening in 2021 is unlikely. But if this situation does drag on to 2022 and that release clause is waiting to be triggered, Bayern will almost certainly join the chase.
Sources say it is fair to assume Robert Lewandowski's time at the club will end in 2023 so in the countdown to that a path needs to open for someone to fill his boots - and Haaland will fit the bill.
Haaland is a talent that comes along once in a generation. The transfer battle to become part of his story is going to be thrilling.
Transfers
Solskjaer role under scrutiny as Conte hovers; Pogba ponders future - Inside Football
17/09/2021 AT 10:32
Transfers
Man Utd eye ambitious swoop for Dortmund duo - Paper Round
15/09/2021 AT 23:09