Chelsea have made Borussia Dortmund forward Erling Haaland their top summer target and will try to steal a march on other European big sides by offering more than his release clause.
The 20-year-old has been in outstanding goalscoring form ever since moving to the Bundesliga and has netted 12 goals in just 11 league games this campaign, as well as registering two assists.
Haaland is one of Europe’s outstanding youngsters and is on the wishlist of a couple of clubs, which includes Real Madrid, Manchester United and Manchester City.
A huge scramble for his signature was expected to happen in 18 months’ time, after the end of the 2021/22 campaign, when his £66.6m release clause becomes active.
But, according to The Athletic, the blues are trying to jump ahead of their rivals by offering a huge fee this coming summer window – a year before the buyout clause becomes active.
Chelsea are ‘going to do their utmost’ to bring him to Stamford Bridge and are prepared to smash their transfer record, with a fee around £100m needed to prise him away from Dortmund.
Dortmund want to keep the player for as long as possible, even if it means losing him for a smaller fee in 2022, and will therefore demand a big fee to let him leave a year early.
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Although most sides have seen their finances hampered by the pandemic, Chelsea have spent freely – spending over £200m last summer – and feel they can exploit the transfer market and their rivals’ current inability to spend.
It could also mean they get a free run on Haaland over the coming months, as Chelsea believe their rivals for his signature are waiting until 2022.
But, they still face a number of significant obstacles in trying to sign him, not least dealing with the striker’s agent Mino Raiola.
Meanwhile, Chelsea do not view Haaland as a replacement for the Timo Werner and feel they would complement each other, with Giroud likely to leave when his contract expires.