Steve McManaman thinks Real Madrid can beat out the wealth of Man City in the race for Erling Haaland

Steve McManaman thinks Real Madrid can beat out the wealth of Man City in the race for Erling Haaland

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16 Jan 2022
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The Norwegian striker is believed to have a release clause in his contract and is open to offers in the summer 2022 market.

Haaland is expected to have his pick of Madrid, Man City, Man United and Bayern

Former Real Madrid and Manchester City winger Steve McManaman thinks the Spanish giants can beat out the wealth of the Premier League champions in the race for Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland. The Norwegian striker is believed to have a release clause in his contract and is open to offers in the summer 2022 market. Regarded as arguably the world’s best young striker, Haaland is expected to have his pick of Madrid, Man City, Manchester United, Bayern Munich and more of Europe’s most influential clubs. “Real Madrid can absolutely win the race – it isn’t only going to be down to money,” McManaman told reporters. “Haaland is already paid a lot now and will earn a lot over his whole career.”

“It isn’t just money; it’s the whole package, it’s the way you want to live, how glamorous the club is. Real Madrid will be a glitzy package with the new stadium, and they are a famous club with a famous history. I don’t think it’s all about money for certain players, even though it is important. Pep Guardiola will play his part and is an incredible manager, but you have to ask how long he will stay at City. You have to ask a lot of different questions as a player. What’s happening with the manager? What is the squad of the team going to look like? If Real Madrid bring Kylian Mbappe and Antonio Rudiger on free contracts, it makes it more appealing.”

Real Madrid vs Athletic Club

“Madrid like the glamour signings, but they must also think midfield and defensively after selling Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane. They need way more than just forwards, but those are the decisions that need to be made.” Carlo Ancelotti’s side recently edged out Barcelona in a 3-2 win in the Super Cup semi-final in Saudi Arabia. They have also booked themselves into a final on Sunday against Athletic Club, who overcame Atletico Madrid in midweek. Meanwhile, the Santiago Bernabeu club are five points clear at the top of the league after a winter break. However, McManaman doesn’t believe this group has what it takes to compete with the best teams from England this season.

“It’s about dominating domestically this season with Europe being beyond them,” he said. “They weren’t good enough to win the Champions League last year, and I thought reaching the semi-final and knocking out Liverpool was a great achievement for that group. I wasn’t surprised Chelsea ran over them. Thomas Tuchel’s side physically dominated an older team; it’s just the way English teams play, press teams and their quickness with the ball gives them an edge. It feels like they are saving up their money to come back when they have their new stadium. Madrid haven’t refreshed or made a big signing since Eden Hazard, but they will go big in the upcoming transfer market. Whether Mbappe or Erling Haaland comes, they are exciting options, and they have a pot of money. Mbappe on a free would be incredible. A re-emergence of Real Madrid is coming soon.”

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