Move over Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo- Erling Haaland is the new kid in town and soon every kid in the playground will be donning his shirt. Which new club that will be is still anyone’s guess but Haaland has taken the headlines by storm and it seems that over the past two weeks everyone has been talking about the Norwegian player who is still only 20.
The hype seems genuine enough, Haaland scores goals, but he is tall, huge in fact, and is quite a presence and his speed is lightning quick, his current club Borussia Dortmund seem to have found a gem of a player.
Haaland has already scored 124 goals in all competitions in his career and this season alone has 33 goals from 33 games. It is stunning and certainly reminds one of Messi and Ronaldo’s records. In short Dortmund are not going to keep him and he is certainly going to be transferred this summer.
In truth at 20 he could probably do with another season in the Bundesliga, but here’s the catch- he can leave next summer for £68m, that is stipulated in his buyout contract. Now that would still be a tidy profit for Dortmund of almost £50m, but of course they want more.
If Haaland was to leave this summer it is possible that he could go for upwards of £150m, that’s the figure that has been talked about. The likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester City and PSG may just be able to convince their purse strings and in some cases their banks to hand over that kind of money for a player who may well light up world football for the next 15 years.
But let’s face it, it is a gamble.
The Bundesliga with all due respect isn’t the highest bar to judge oneself. True the current European champions are Bayern Munich, but they are almost a one off. Like PSG who reached last year’s final too- it doesn’t mean that particular league is strong. That isn’t to say German football isn’t strong, but currently one would have to question.
Take Timo Werner at Chelsea who was scoring goals for fun in the Bundesliga, when Chelsea were able to snap up the German international for around £60m it looked like a bargain. However Werner has had a poor debut season with the Blues, and quite frankly his confidence looks shot. He may improve next season, then again…. The Premier League, La Liga and Serie A are simply at a higher level, and you can get found out.
It doesn’t seem like Haaland will have any troubles adjusting to a different league but when prices of £150m are being quoted doesn’t someone have to say, well, hang on a second?
What has Haaland proved so far, yes he looks good, yes he can score goals, but he hasn’t done anything significant yet. True he’s young but how about make a mark- because all of the other greats have done so.
Imagine for example in the 2nd leg of Dortmund’s quarter final Champions League tie against Manchester City Haaland makes the difference and helps knock City out of the competition. That would be quite a marker to lay down. No one is expecting Haaland to join his new club loaded with trophies in his resume just yet, but perhaps one would like to see some showing in a big match first.
It is why in reality Haaland is only worth his buyout clause he hasn’t really been able to make that difference not to a team yet, not like Kylian Mbappe for example, although of course Mbappe is in a better team.
Dortmund of course will understand that if they sold Haaland for £70m one day he could be sold on for £200m plus and they don’t want to miss out, that is the business of football. Some players simply are not worth what clubs are prepared to offer.
Ideally everyone should be happy with a smaller fee, it’s still profit for his original club but Dortmund will go for the top price, and honestly you can’t blame them for that. As for Haaland the truth of how great he will be is only going to be revealed next season at his new club.