Borussia Dortmund's Erling Braut Haaland has reached such heights in the football world that his name is plastered among newspapers across Europe.
The Norway striker's eruption has been of such a magnitude that with four months to go until the transfer window opens, and despite having a contract until 2024, he's being linked with nearly every big club.
What he's achieved in terms of pure statistics at just 20 years old is well known but it's worth repeating. This season, he's been directly involved in 34 goals (27 goals, seven assists) in the 25 official games he has played. It's only been just over a year since he joined one of Europe's top five leagues, signing for Dortmund on Jan. 1, 2020.
From the very first moment, he's made his mark. Prior to the move, he was posting similar numbers in Austria with Red Bull Salzburg, but one expected he would match them so quickly in Germany. And in the Champions League, he's already scored 22 times in 22 appearances.
In the middle of an election campaign -- a new president will be elected on March 7 at FC Barcelona -- Haaland's name is gathering more strength all the time.
With prudence, of course, because Barça's financial situation is alarming and leaves little room for 'fantasy.' In fact, some sort of fluke or a miracle is likely needed for Haaland to end up at Camp Nou this summer. Three of four players would have to be sold at a good price (a utopia seeing how the market is and how Barça have struggled to sell recently) and an installment plan would have to be agreed with Dortmund, who would have to be especially considerate to Barça's needs.
One of the candidates, Joan Laporta, was asked recently about the striker. Above all because of his good relationship with Mino Raiola, the player's agent. "If we have to improve the team, I have the cards ready to do it," he commented, leaving the door open.
Another candidate, Victor Font, wasn't as strong. "Generating expectations about the stars that have shone in the Champions League this week is irresponsible because it's not possible to sign them."
A tireless competitor
The arrival of Haaland would, without a doubt, provoke a hurricane at the club. It would be a breath of fresh air for everyone: fans, players... After the departure of Luis Suarez, the team has been left without a goal scorer. And Haaland is exactly that. In abuncance.
He's a box player but also much more and he does almost everything well. He's capable of linking play, has a brilliant shot and also has qualities away from the goal. He's a competition that only wants to win and doesn't tire of scoring goals.
Obviously, it remains to be seen who is elected and what their project is for next season, but it's hard to think there would not be room for Haaland. And the fantasy of accompanying him with Lionel Messi... Maybe that's a tint of surrealism, but what else do we have left now, if not a little imagination?
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