crazy money | 

Man City set to confirm signing of Erling Haaland in deal worth up to €250m

Norway star undergoes medical ahead of five-year move which will ‘set new levels’, according to Jurgen Klopp

Erling Haaland, who has been allowed to take care of "personal matters" by Borussia Dortmund amid increased speculation the striker is poised to sign for Manchester City. Photo: PA Wire

James Ducker and Sam WallaceTelegraph Media Group Limited

Manchester City will confirm the signing of Norway striker Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund this week in a transfer that could end up costing around €250m in total.

Haaland flew to Belgium yesterday to undergo a medical ahead of his move to City in another huge statement of intent from the Premier League champions and a blow to their rivals.

City are due to formally trigger the €75m release clause in Haaland’s contract with Dortmund after seeing off Real Madrid in the tug-of-war for one of Europe’s most coveted young players.

Haaland (21) is expected to put pen to paper on a five-year contract worth around €125m, including signing-on bonuses. But it is understood the overall cost of the deal could reach €250m once sums to agents, representatives and other assorted fees worth up to €50m are also factored in.

Jurgen Klopp, whose Liverpool side will hope to keep up the pressure on City in the title race by beating Aston Villa tonight, claimed the figures would “set new levels” in transfer terms.

Last month, Klopp suggested Liverpool refused to join the race for Haaland because of the “crazy” costs involved.

Dortmund confirmed yesterday that Haaland had been given permission to settle “personal matters”. He is understood to have had a medical at the Erasmus hospital in Brussels in the company of City doctors.

Dortmund’s players were all on a day off yesterday, but they are due to return to training this afternoon. Haaland is expected to be among them and play in their final game of the Bundesliga season against Hertha Berlin on Saturday.

A formal announcement of the move could come before the weekend, barring any late complications, but Dortmund, a listed company, must first inform the stock market of the transfer.

However, Haaland is unlikely to be joined at City this summer by Paul Pogba. The Manchester United midfielder, who is due to become a free agent at the end of the season, was made a proposal by City, but is expected to pursue a move overseas. He is understood to have at least two other firm offers on the table and is attracting interest from Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus, Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Nonetheless, it is expected to be a busy summer at City, who also want to sign a midfielder, with Fernandinho leaving, and a young right-back.

There could also be one or two high-profile departures, with Gabriel Jesus, Raheem Sterling, Ilkay Gundogan and Riyad Mahrez about to enter the final year of their contracts.

Arsenal are interested in signing Jesus, but Mikel Arteta, the north London club’s manager, is also ready to explore a deal for Sterling should he become available this summer.

Haaland’s wages of around €450,000-a-week including bonuses, will put him alongside Kevin De Bruyne and Jack Grealish as City’s highest earners, but still far below United’s Cristiano Ronaldo, the Premier League’s highest paid player on up to €900,000-a-week.

News of Haaland’s impending move comes only 10 days after the sudden death of his agent, Mino Raiola. Raiola - who also represented Pogba and had previously endured a strained relationship with Guardiola – had been ill for some time, so negotiations with City were handled by his lawyer and business partner, Rafaela Pimenta.

City were interested in signing Haaland last summer but, with the German club opposed to selling given that Jadon Sancho was already leaving for United, the champions switched their attention to England striker Harry Kane, only for Spurs to block any move.

Guardiola remains a huge admirer of Kane, but Haaland, who is seven years younger, was considered a better long-term investment and marks the end of their search for a successor to Sergio Aguero.

City felt they made a crucial breakthrough in their pursuit of Haaland around two months ago, and were confident they would beat Real to his signature. The deal was as good as done a week ago, with only the formalities to complete.

United tried and failed to sign Haaland from Red Bull Salzburg in January 2020, despite then manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer feeling he had a deal in place with the player, whom he had managed at Molde in Norway. United were dismissed as an option this time because the striker did not feel they could match his ambitions on the pitch, with sources close to the player saying they were pursuing a “sporting project”.

The race for Haaland came down to a straight fight between City and Real, who continued to push hard, despite their priority being to lure Kylian Mbappe from PSG as a free agent this summer.

Haaland is thought to have harboured reservations about a move to Real in the same window potentially as Mbappe. Haaland’s former clubs, Bryne, Molde and Salzburg, are due to share solidarity payments totalling €3.2 million for their part in his development.

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