The Norwegian national team and Borussia Dortmund forward Erling Holand has become a major transfer target for several top clubs at once. The agent Mino Raiola, who represents the interests of the player, and his father held meetings in Barcelona and Madrid on April 1 with the management of the major Spanish top clubs.
The summer transfer campaign in the soccer world promises to be very loud. Clubs have not yet fully recovered from the financial losses caused by the coronavirus pandemic, but at the same time the heads of teams and their fans missed the high-profile transfers, and the budgets for them are still available. At least for the top teams.
In addition, there is now a wealth of talents in the world who are eager to try themselves at a new level and in a new environment, and some were not averse to making transfers before this season, but had to abandon their plans because of the pandemic.
The 20-year-old Norwegian striker of German Borussia Dortmund, Erling Holand, is one of the most attractive targets on the transfer market, and more or less all the major clubs in the world are ready to hunt for him.
Three favorites in the race stand out among them: English Manchester City and Spanish Real Madrid and Barcelona.
Holland himself only moved from Austrian Red Bull Salzburg to Germany over the winter last season, but his agent, Mino Raiola, explained very clearly in a recent interview with The Athletic why the transfer issue arises after only a year and a half.
“Maybe I was too cautious when I told him, ‘No, let’s go to Dortmund, not somewhere I don’t know where.’ This guy can play at any club he wants, he’s already at that level. And I’m one hundred percent sure of that, as everyone is sure. And he could have done it last year,” said the player’s representative, who works with many star clients, including Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. – “But there may have been teams left thinking last year, ‘Oh, yeah, he was at Salzburg, but can he do it again at another club?” He’s ahead of his own predictions. That’s why everyone is talking about Holand.”
- Holland’s level words are backed up by statistics. He not only dominated the domestic scene for Salzburg, but also put goals to all their Champions League group-stage rivals, including England’s Liverpool and Italy’s Napoli.
During the first half-season at Borussia he scored 13 times himself, assisted his teammates three times in 15 games in the German Bundesliga, and also scored twice in the first leg of the Champions League last 16 against PSG from France (2-1). It is true, however, that the German team lost the return game (0-2) and dropped out.
This season, the Bumblebees are again failing to capture the league title in the Bundesliga, but it was certainly not the fault of the Norwegian, who scored 21 goals and made four assists in 21 league games.
And in the UEFA Champions League Hoeland is the top scorer at all. He distinguished himself in all six matches in the group and 1/8 finals in which he took part, scoring ten goals.
Moreover, the Spanish Sevilla suffered four goals in the dramatic encounter in the 1/8 finals (3-2, 2-2) – a double each in the first and second meetings.
- Holand has 14 games and 20 goals in the world’s best club competition by the age of 20, a fantastic record.
Initially at the transition the player and Borussia had an agreement that the player sees the club as a springboard, honestly working off the contract, in Dortmund then do not put obstacles to the transition.
The problem, though, is that the agreement comes into effect in the summer of 2022. According to sources, the contract even stipulates the amount of compensation, not exceeding €100 million.
It is clear that the player and his representatives already want to move on, and the striker’s performance is quite conducive to the implementation of such plans. The Borussia management, of course, would not like the main player to leave.
Famous journalist-insider Fabrizio Romano reported that the club does not intend to let the player go for less than €150 million in the coming summer.
“Yes, yesterday I communicated with Raiola. We were very clear about our intentions,” Bumblebees sporting director Michael Zork said on Sky Deutschland.
However, it is unlikely that the yellow and black have a realistic opportunity to keep Holand from transferring, and Zork’s words sound like price-fixing in imminent negotiations.
- On April 1, the race to move the Norwegian reached a new level, as Fabrizio Romano reported on the morning of a visit to Barcelona by Raiola along with the player’s father Alf-Inge Holand, who was himself quite a famous footballer and played for Leeds in the APL in the 90s.
There they met with a representative of the recently elected president of the Catalan club, Joan Laporta.
Laporta himself had previously said that Barcelona needed to strengthen their attacking line with high-profile transfers, and it is Holand who he sees as the main goal of the blue-granata.
Barcelona Barcelona did not seem capable of such a deal due to financial problems, but recently there were reports that the club will take a loan from a bank to acquire the Norwegian, as they did for the transfer of Antoine Griezmann a couple of years ago.
However, it is hardly worth saying that the striker is now the closest to Barça. A little later it was reported that Raiola and Holland Sr. directly from Catalonia on a private plane arrived in Madrid and there discussed the possible transition to Real Madrid.
“I have no problem with Alfie and Mino deciding to sunbathe in the Mediterranean. I am relaxed because I know what we want,” Zork commented on the news for the German TV channel Sport1.
- Although, the bosses of Borussia have a hard time with that, because they have not yet paid the €150m, they can hardly replace the unskilled Norwegian, and it would be unreal to keep him. There is also Man City, for whom Holland is also a priority target for the summer.