Manchester United still aiming to sign Erling Haaland next summer
Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to Manchester United was a huge transfer decision made by the club.
One concern hanging over it, is whether it costs United a shot at Erling Haaland.
Ronaldo has signed a two-year deal with an option of a third, and he is 36.
Haaland by contrast is 21-years-old and United would tie him to a six-year deal if he were to sign, and hope to increase this to 10 with a second extension.
If United’s decision to sign Ronaldo leads to Haaland joining a rival club, particularly City, it could be costly.
United still pursuing Haaland
Haaland could have chosen to sign another club anyway. Regardless of United’s Ronaldo decision, and he was not available this summer.
So United have acted smartly to get Ronaldo in now. Haaland will be pursued by City, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid next summer too.
Edinson Cavani’s contract is due to expire and Anthony Martial could too be sold next year. So United are still keen on Haaland.
ESPN report Haaland remains United’s ‘priority target’ up front for next summer.
Cavani’s exit will free up wage space along with an attacking role, and United’s outlay on a fee for Ronaldo was minimal.
German outlet Sport1 reported last month Haaland’s release clause could increase based on performance, but would be capped at a max of 90 million Euros (£76m).
Haaland may need to be convinced
The biggest obstacle will not be finances, or the direction United are heading in.
It will be to convince Haaland himself. Will he be concerned about sharing a stage with Ronaldo?
Haaland could see it as an attraction to play with Ronaldo, or he could see him as a reason not to sign, because the veteran forward will be United’s main man.
Long-term Haaland will be the man, but he may not want to wait a couple of seasons in Ronaldo’s shadow.
At the moment, we can just be glad United still intend to make a push for the Norwegian. It would be frustrating if the club had walked away after signing Ronaldo.
Going after Haaland too shows real ambition and it is a move United should push hard to make happen.
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