Manchester United reportedly tabled a £50million offer for Erling Braut Haaland in January – £33m more than the 19-year-old’s release clause. The Red Devils are said to have made such an offer to tempt the Austrian side to allow them exclusivity.
A host of Europe’s top clubs were tracking Haaland after he made a blistering start to the season, scoring 28 goals in 22 appearances.
However, the young Dutchman opted to join Borussia Dortmund, where he has continued his rich vein of form.
United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer flew out to meet the striker in a bid to tempt him to move to Old Trafford.
Salzburg sporting director Christoph Freund told SportBild United were “very interested” in completing a deal as Ed Woodward conducted negotiations.
He claimed Haaland would not have opted to move to Dortmund if he “made a financial decision” because of United’s proposal.
Woodward was hoping to offer such a substantial fee in an attempt to hold exclusive talks with the attacker.
Freund added: “From Dortmund, Michael Zorc was the first to contact us. However, there had already been discussions between BVB and Erling’s consultants.
“Many clubs were interested, but Dortmund probably had the best arguments. BVB was looking for exactly this type of player for this position. And as you can see, it was a good decision.”
Haaland is not expected to remain at Dortmund for very long if he continues his goalscoring form.
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Real Madrid are reportedly considering scrapping their plans to sign Paris Saint-Germain’s Kylian Mbappe.
Instead they will turn their attention to Haaland and former Spain international Alvaro Negredo has thrown his weight behind a swoop.
“He’s [Haaland] a player I’ve seen a lot and he’s spectacular,” Negredo told Spanish outlet Marca.
“He can strike with both feet and he’s taking advantage of every chance. He’ll keep growing.
“He’d be a perfect fit [for Madrid] and he could adapt well with Benzema.
“Because of [Karim] Benzema’s way of playing, they need someone else. He needs another forward by his side.”
Haaland is under contract with Dortmund until June 2024 so it could take a large fee to prise him away from the Westfalenstadion.
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