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The first official talks have begun that could lead to the transfer of Erling Haaland to Barcelona, according to reports.
Haaland is one of the most sought after players in the world. The forward has enjoyed a rapid rise to fame and is attracting interest from bigger clubs than the current Borussia Dortmund bosses. A Premier League move, for example, has been suggested.
Manchester City are one of the main contenders to sign Haaland, especially now that they have confirmed that Sergio Aguero will be released this summer. The Norwegian international could be the perfect successor.
Chelsea is also interested in a big money move for the 20-year-old, although the interest is not necessarily mutual.
There have also been many rumors of interest from Manchester United, who tried to sign him before he joined Dortmund. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer worked with Haaland early in his career at Molde.
But now one of the other European giants hoping to sign Haaland has taken its first step.
Haaland’s father, Alf-Inge, and agent Mino Raiola, have been photographed in Barcelona. According to ESPN, a meeting has taken place with the leaders of the Catalan club.
The president of Barcelona, Joan Laporta, and the newly appointed director of football Mateu Alemany was present. The meeting lasted two and a half hours, but the talks are still in the early stages.
The La Liga giants are trying to figure out how they would fund a move for Haaland. Dortmund are believed to be reluctant to collect € 180 million this summer., even though they are liable to lose it because of a cheaper release clause the following summer.
Amid great competition for his signature, Barcelona are now intensifying their search. First, they must eliminate some of the big money earners to fund a potential deal.
Philippe Coutinho, Samuel Umtiti and Antoine Griezmann run the risk of being transferred. The Barça will have to reduce his salary expense to free space for Haaland.
Clubs like Real Madrid or Manchester City would find it easier to spend the funds required for the deal. But Barcelona don’t want to miss it, as Haaland could guarantee them success for the next decade.
Thus, they hope that Raiola’s positive relationship with Laporta and technical secretary Ramón Planes will give them an advantage.
Haaland has huge salary demands
It is not just the transfer fee that Barcelona will have to fork out. A recent report highlighted how much Haaland wants as salary.
Raiola will attempt to negotiate wages of £ 600,000 per week for his client over a five-year contract, according to Sun..
That would mean a significant loss for Barcelona’s finances, but a potential deal also has significant benefits.
Not only would Haaland’s potential signing help them compete for top honors in the years to come, it could also help convince Lionel Messi to stay.
Messi is out of contract for the summer, but Laporta’s return could help persuade him to extend his contract. However, that contract would also be important for Barça.
Therefore, they will have to try to get rid of some of their unwanted players who still have value.
READ MORE: Raiola admits a mistake about the transfer of Erling Haaland for 22.5 million euros