Former Manchester United midfielder Luke Chadwick is hoping his former side are in the mix to sign Erling Haaland from Borussia Dortmund next summer.
Man United are a team that has always had a centre-forward they could rely on, certainly in the Premier League era. Goals from their strikers have fired them to copious trophies.
From the days of Andy Cole and Dwight Yorke, to having Wayne Rooney, Carlos Tevez and Dimitar Berbatov on their books concurrently – firepower breeds success in Manchester.
After a brief spell without a free-scoring striker, Edinson Cavani has proven to be a highly effective stop gap. The veteran proved his worth with ten goals in 11 games during the end of season run-in.
However, at 34-years-old and out of contract next summer, it’s clear that Cavani is not the long-term solution in attack that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be eager to acquire.
Ex-Red Devil Luke Chadwick, speaking exclusively to CaughtOffside, acknowledged the need for a new striker at Old Trafford and speculated as to who could come through the door.
“I think Haaland’s certainly the one,” Chadwick said. “You look at them ‘top end’ strikers, strikers that you can almost guarantee can get you 20 Premier League goals in the season, you’d say Haaland, with what he’s shown at the start of his career is certainly going to be one of them.”
“Harry Kane’s another, Mbappe potentially but I can’t see United getting him.”
Man United fans will be hoping that the club think in tandem with their former midfielder, with the top bracket of strikers exactly where a club with their ambitions ought to be shopping.
If Kane is to stay at Tottenham this summer, an extra year crossed off his contract could make striking a deal with Daniel Levy more plausible.
As for Haaland, as has been well established, the Norwegian prodigy has a release clause in his Dortmund contract which is due to kick in next summer.
It means any interested parties – and you’d imagine there’ll be a few – would be able to sign him for ‘just’ £70m, or so is the figure reported by Sky Sports.
Chadwick is keeping his fingers crossed that United are in the mix, with Cavani’s one-year extension part of Man United’s plans to add Haaland to the squad next summer.
“You’d like to think that’s what in mind, that is the reason Cavani has signed for another 12 months,” Chadwick continued, speaking exclusively to CaughtOffside.
“A world, world-class player over the last 10 years, is he going to get 20-25 goals in the Premier League next season? I’m not sure he will because I’m not sure he’ll play that amount of games with the stage of his career he’s in.”
“You’d like to think, because of the Haaland situation, the clause kicking in next season, that’s the reason United are holding off.”
“Obviously, £150m for him now would be a big ask with the outlay that’s gone on Sancho and Varane, and maybe at least one more coming in around that £50m-£60m mark.”
“Maybe it’s me being a bit of a dreamer but I’d like to think Haaland could be the one to take on that number 9 mantle for next season and that is the reason Cavani’s signed that 12 month extension.”
Jan Aage Fjortoft, a friend of the Haaland family, has previously reported that Chelsea are preparing a big-money bid in their attempts to woo Haaland this summer.
If Chelsea’s pursuit of the 21-year-old falls flat, it’s likely to prompt an all-out war between a host of Europe’s top clubs next summer, with £70m for a player with his potential superb value in the current market.
You’d expect Man United to be showing an interest, and with Solskjaer having a pre-existing relationship with the player himself, there’s no reason why the club couldn’t pull it off.
As with most things in football, certainly in the transfer market, we’ll have to wait and see.