Manchester United could be back in the race to sign Norweigian starlet Erling Braut Haaland as early as this summer, according to The Evening Standard.
The Red Devils came close to signing the prodigious 19-year-old in January, with manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer being a firm admirer and having close ties to the player and his family, but Haaland opted to join Borussia Dortmund instead.
One of the stumbling blocks in the negotiation was believed to be United’s refusal to allow a €75 million (£69 million) buyout clause in Haaland’s contract, which ironically they could now meet themselves in an attempt to land their man.
Real Madrid are believed to have made Haaland their top transfer target in the summer and if they decide to trigger the release clause, United will match their offer, according to the Evening Standard’s report.
Haaland has hit the ground running in spectacular style in the Bundesliga, having scored 12 goals in 11 games since his January arrival.
Dortmund would be reluctant to sell the player after only half a season – or less depending on the effects of the coronavirus crisis on this season’s completion – but if the release clause is triggered there would be little the German side could do to prevent an approach.
The fact that the release clause is so reasonable and can be triggered so quickly may to some extent vindicate United’s negotiators Ed Woodward and Matt Judge for failing to clinch the deal in January.
And, as the Standard points out, Haaland’s agent Mino Raiola likes to ‘move players on quickly’.
All would then come down to the player and whether he would choose to move again so soon. Logic would suggest that he would be better off getting another year under his belt in Germany before moving to either of the more highly pressurised environments of the Premier League or La Liga.
However, stranger things have happened and if Real or United were able to turn the young star’s head with an offer he couldn’t refuse, which could even potentially include loaning him back to Dortmund for a year, it is a deal that could still happen and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reunion with his young protégé could finally materialise.
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