Manchester United hope that signing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to a new contract could put them ahead of their rivals’ attempts to sign Erling Haaland, reports claim.
United and Solskjaer had hoped and expected to sign Haaland at the end of 2019 but he ultimately signed for Borussia Dortmund, leading United to sign Bruno Fernandes from Sporting Lisbon in the following January’s transfer window.
Haaland and Solskjaer were together at Molde before the Norwegian striker moved to RB Salzburg. The Mirror reports that one reason for Haaland’s decision to join Dortmund was because he was worried United’s manager would not last long at Old Trafford. His new contract as boss runs until 2024, which should solidify his position at the club for the foreseeable future.
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Dortmund sold Jadon Sancho to United for £73 million last month which means they are able to stick to their valuation of £160m for the 21-year-old striker, a price which current suitors Chelsea are not willing to match. That means he is likely to move when his £68m release clause kicks in next summer, which will probably cause most of Europe’s top clubs to join the chase.
If Solskjaer’s position is still secure as manager then the chance to link up with both his former manager and old teammate Sancho could prove decisive.
OUR VIEW - Haaland may not be convinced despite Solskjaer's contract
Haaland had the chance to join United once and turned them down already, and it is hard to believe he particularly cares who the manager is - because a manager rarely lasts more than a year or two at any club. What is more believable is the release clause that Mino Raiola has inserted at Borussia Dortmund that means the striker is almost certain to move on, and the agent is almost certain to earn a huge wedge as a result.
As United have found out dealing with Raiola when it comes to Paul Pogba, it is a constant hassle to have one of his big-name players.
If United were reluctant to get the clause into their own deal with the Norwegian striker, then Raiola and Haaland would logically have wanted to go elsewhere.
However, when Haaland was a target for United the first time around, the club seemed to be in another bout of chaos, but in the intervening 18 months they can now point to a much more successful setup and give more reasons for optimism. What they can't do is offer the same glamour that Real Madrid do, or the pure financial ambition that is currently behind Chelsea's operations.
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