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Manchester United make Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland their ‘priority target’ for 2022 – Paper Round

Manchester United make Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland their 'priority target' for 2022 - Paper Round


Man Utd make Haaland ‘priority target’

Manchester United have made Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland their “priority signing” for next summer – despite the return of Cristiano Ronaldo at Old Trafford. ESPN report that the Red Devils still have the financial power to convince Haaland to choose them over potential rivals, including Manchester City, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain. United believe that the arrival of Ronaldo back in Manchester could play into their hands as Haaland has a well-known admiration for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.

Paper Round’s view: Pandemic? What pandemic? Premier League clubs seem wholly unaffected by the financial consequences of Covid-19, which has been reflected in their £1 billion+ spend in the summer transfer market. Manchester United are ready to go big again next summer after bringing in Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and Ronaldo this year. Haaland would be the ideal signing for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side… but the 21-year-old would also be perfect for so many other clubs. It’s going to be an intense battle.

Man City aren’t going down without a fight

Manchester City are ready to go to battle with their fierce rivals Manchester United over the signing of Erling Haaland next summer. The two Premier League clubs are aware of the 21-year-old’s £64.5-million release clause, which becomes active at the end of the 2021-22 campaign. Pep Guardiola’s side accepted defeat in their pursuit of Tottenham Hotspur talisman Harry Kane last week and will now turn their attention to Haaland next summer. The Borussia Dortmund striker is said to be “top of their wish-list”.


Paper Round’s view: Manchester City arguably need Haaland more than Manchester United. Ronaldo’s return to Old Trafford on a two-year deal means that Haaland would be battling with the Portuguese forward for a starting spot next season if he moved to the red half of Manchester. Contrastingly, Guardiola’s squad is missing a top-class centre-forward and focal point in attack. Manchester City have the likes of Gabriel Jesus and Ferran Torres, but neither compare to the quality of Haaland.

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Barca ready to return for Olmo

After a disastrous summer, Barcelona are already planning for the winter transfer window. The Mail report that the Catalan club are looking to bring back academy product Dani Olmo, who left for Dinamo Zagreb seven years ago. The 23-year-old has since moved to RB Leipzig, and Barca reportedly tabled a £50-million bid for Olmo on Deadline Day, which was rejected by the Bundesliga club. Olmo, who is “determined” to return to Barcelona, is valued at £65 million by his parent club.

Paper Round’s view: We’re not too sure where this money has come from. Barcelona were forced to ask senior players to take wage-cuts just so that their new summer signings could be registered for the new season. Lionel Messi left for Paris Saint-Germain and Antoine Griezmann has returned to Atletico Madrid on loan, but neither departure raised any transfer funds. Anyway… Olmo is a supremely talented footballer and it makes sense that top clubs are keen on signing him, but this story doesn’t make a whole deal of sense. Barca just sold promising academy product Ilaix Moriba to RB Leipzig for a measly £14 million.


Van de Beek’s blocked move away from Manchester

Manchester United midfielder Donny van de Beek was refused a loan move away from Old Trafford on Deadline Day, according to the Mail. The Dutchman has been out of favour under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer since completing a £35-million move from Ajax in 2020. Everton tested the waters with a late loan offer for Van de Beek, but their bid was rejected after they were told that the 24-year-old is part of Solskjaer’s plans. Van de Beek has reportedly been assured that he will be given more game time this season.

Paper Round’s view: The situation at Manchester United must be getting very frustrating for Van de Beek. The former Ajax midfielder was linked to the likes of Real Madrid and Inter Milan before landing at Old Trafford. Van de Beek shone for the Dutch side on Champions League nights during their thrilling run to the semi-finals back in 2019… and now he’s bench-warming for the majority of his matches. A move away would’ve been great for him and his confidence, but hopefully he will be given a chance during this campaign like he was promised by Solskjaer.