Borussia Dortmund chief explains how close Manchester United came to signing Erling Haaland

Borussia Dortmund chief explains how close Manchester United came to signing Erling Haaland

Borussia Dortmund chief Hans-Joachim Watzke has revealed that his club had to give Erling Haaland a release clause in his contract when signing him or else they would have lost out to Manchester United.

Haaland emerged as one of the most exciting players in world football at Red Bull Salzburg in 2019 and there was a clamour for his signature ahead of the 2020 January transfer window. United were interested in the Norwegian sensation, especially as his compatriot Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who was in charge at Old Trafford, had played a hand in his meteoric rise at Molde.

However, it was Dortmund who stole in ahead of the pack to sign Haaland for just £18million and he has only gone from strength to strength in Germany, netting a remarkable 82 goals in just 86 games. Now there is once again a transfer race brewing for his signature.

ALSO READ: Manchester United must change reputation to follow Ralf Rangnick’s Erling Haaland transfer advice

It’s widely understood that a £63m release clause will become activated this summer with the 21-year-old in line for a massive move. His father’s former club Manchester City are the favourites but Watzke has explained how he nearly moved to the red half of Manchester two-and-a-half-years ago.

“We gave Erling Haaland a release clause… otherwise he would have gone to Manchester United,” he told 19:09 Talk. He then strongly hinted that the striker would be leaving Signal Iduna Park this summer: “He has a decision to make, it will come eventually. But I’m sure we’ll find the new Haaland. We need the new Haaland.”

MEN Sport reported after Haaland’s move to Dortmund was confirmed that United pulled out of the deal as they refused to agree to the same buyout clause as well as a percentage of future sales going towards his agent Mino Raiola.

Interim United boss Ralf Rangnick has told the club that they need to sign young players of Haaland’s calibre in order to be a success: He said: “Haaland is a young player, he is 21 or 22, this is one of those players I spoke about. But, on the other hand, he has developed into one of the most expensive strikers in the world.

“He could be one of those examples where I think the focus should be on to try and identify and find and then convince players who could be Manchester United players for the next couple of years.

“It is obvious the club and the team need more players, for the very reason that quite a few players have no contracts anymore and some other players are not available anymore, some players might want to get more game-time and are on loan already. It is obvious the club needs quite a few new players.

“I already told you how I see that. For me, it’s important the club identifies scouts and then recruits those kinds of players to develop Manchester United into one of the top teams again and therefore, you need mentality, quality, physicality, pace, skills, you need the full package.”

We want your views, Reds. You can become even more involved with our Man United coverage by signing up. This will unlock a whole host of things – including joining the comments and taking part in our special Q&As, where you can speak directly to our reporters about what’s happening at Old Trafford this week and beyond.

Click here to get started.

Sign up to our United newsletter so you never miss an update from Old Trafford this season.

Source: Healthy Duck.

Latest News