Barcelona boss Xavi jets out to Germany to meet Erling Haaland to win transfer race


Barcelona boss Xavi Hernandez led a delegation from the Catalan club to fly to Germany this week to hold a meeting with Borussia Dortmund star striker Erling Haaland

A delegation of Barcelona officials including boss Xavi Hernandez flew out to Germany to meet Borussia Dortmund striker Erling Haaland this week.

Barcelona in December held a meeting with the player’s agent Mino Raiola while Dortmund recently confirmed that Real Madrid are among those who are interested in signing the Norwegian.

The Norwegian fuelled speculation of a transfer to La Liga in January as he confirmed that he would like to play in Spain during his career.

Barca president Joan Laporta’s reported confidence in signing the striker has sparked off what has been described as a ‘war’ between the club and El Clasico rivals Madrid.

In January, the Norwegian striker claimed that Borussia Dortmund were pushing him into making a decision on his future amid speculation that he may be on the move this summer.

Barca are hoping to steal a march to seal the striker’s signature this year with boss Xavi taking it upon himself to attempt to hasten a deal.

The Blaugrana coach travelled to Munich on Tuesday to hold a meeting with the player in a delegation that including sporting director Jordi Cruyff according to L’Esportiu, as per Diario Sport.

The decision was taken as the Catalan club did not have a midweek fixture while the Norwegian striker had time in his schedule as he recovered from injury.

Haaland has a reported £63million release clause that kicks in this summer – a factor that will spark a series of elite European clubs’ interest in signing the Norwegian.

Manchester United will be among a host of clubs looking at a potential summer swoop for Haaland alongside Manchester City, while German champions Bayern Munich will also be keeping tabs on his future.

Yet the striker’s previous comments on a switch to Spanish football may give an advantage to both Barca and Real Madrid.

In this particular battle, the Spanish capital club may be disadvantaged in their pursuit of Kylian Mbappe – who is out of contract at Paris Saint-Germain this summer and who has been closely linked with a switch to Madrid

There is little question over the 21-year-old’s world-class status, as he has netted 80 goals in just 79 appearances for Dortmund since his switch from Red Bull Salzburg two years ago – including 23 times in 20 outings this campaign.

Haaland has continued to break multiple goal-scoring records, netting 27 goals in 25 matches across his games in European competitions.

In the 2020–21 campaign, Haaland was integral in Dortmund’s DFB-Pokal win, won the Bundesliga Player of the Season award and finished as the top scorer of the Champions League.