Manchester City are continuing to push for talks with Erling Haaland’s representatives over a new contract, 90min understands.
The Norwegian superstar has built on the success of his incredible first season in England, in which City won the Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup, to again top the goalscoring charts with 17 goals in 18 appearances across all competitions.
Haaland has established himself as the premier striker in world football since joining City, demonstrating that his prior goalscoring exploits at Borussia Dortmund and Red Bull Salzburg were no fluke, and his standing in the game was proven when he finished as runner-up to 2023 Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi, ahead of Paris Saint-Germain’s Kylian Mbappe.
He signed a five-year contract when joining City in the summer of 2022, with the deal including a number of clauses like he had at both Dortmund and Salzburg. He has been linked to both Real Madrid and Barcelona ever since, with many feeling it’s Haaland’s destiny to end up at one of Spain’s, and the world’s, two biggest clubs.
90min revealed in March that City had told Haaland’s camp of their desire to remove a specific release clause from his contract – while negotiating new and improved terms – but had been given short shrift by his agent, Rafaela Pimenta, who is keen for the 23-year-old to be in control of his future.
Pimenta reiterated that desire this week, confirming publicly that Haaland remains the ‘master of his destiny’ while suggesting that only City and his inner circle know the value of his release clause.
90min understands that the clauses written into Haaland’s contract do not become active until 2025 – some were removed entirely when Pep Guardiola extended his own contract – and City are willing to soften their stance and discuss a new deal that will increase the release clause’s value, rather than remove it entirely as was previously hoped.
That’s something Haaland’s camp may be willing to consider as it stands, but given he’s already one of City’s highest earners, 90min understands there’s no rush to engage in talks with the club’s hierarchy.
Real Madrid have been tipped as the favourites to sign Haaland, if he ends up leaving, but their immediate plans still revolve around trying to sign Mbappe from PSG next summer.
Barcelona, as 90min exclusively revealed in September, would also be in the running for Haaland from 2025 onwards, when the club hope to have ironed out the financial difficulties that have plagued them over the past couple of years.
By that point, Barca will be looking for a long-term successor to Robert Lewandowski, who will be nearing 37 years of age and entering the final year of the contract he signed when joining from Bayern Munich.